College collapse angers overseas students

Department of Further Education, Employment, Science and Technology deputy chief executive Elaine Bensted said the State Government’s priority was the students and ensuring they could continue their study in Adelaide.

Meanwhile, a former director of GEOS Adelaide said the company acted as cash cow for the Japanese parent company.

Gary Maserow, who resigned in October, said he had “no idea” why GEOS Adelaide and eight other Australian GEOS companies went into voluntary administration.

Six of the nine companies recorded profits in the last financial year, according to financial reports completed by BDO Kendalls.

Mr Maserow, who was also regional co-ordinator for all GEOS colleges in Australia and New Zealand, said there was “enormous pressure” placed on the company to send Australian profits to Japan.

“Japan demanded and demanded,” Mr Maserow said.

Dharmadasa Ratnayake Mudiyanselage, a director of the nine Australian companies, said the companies had liquidity problems.

Mr Maserow said he had “no idea” why all of the companies went into voluntary administration.

“What happened in the last six months?” Mr Maserow said. “Because the audit was fine.”

Mr Maserow dismissed suggestions the global financial crisis had contributed to the collapse.

The Australian GEOS companies had two other directors at the time of the collapse: David Emert and Japan-based Tsuneo Kusunoki, who founded GEOS in 1973.

Mr Emert and Mr Kusunoki did not respond to calls.

Administrators Ernst & Young are continuing to investigate the collapse.