Author Topic: IceTv in Voluntary Administarion  (Read 69713 times)

Offline warkus

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Re: IceTv in Voluntary Administarion
« Reply #120 on: October 11, 2015, 05:28:28 PM »
I've already said this to several people that have asked me, but my opinion is that existing subscriptions are gone forever. I think peteru summed it up well.

What most people probably don't yet realise is that IF - big IF - the TV guide service does continue and gets taken over by someone else, they will likely NOT honour the lifetime Skippa subscription for the skippas or anyone else's paid subscriptions for that matter either, otherwise that company buying into it will be zero profit for a long time to come as they have no income stream until people start to subscribe again. Technically if they are only purchasing the guide service itself, they don't have to honour the previous subscriptions which were contracted to the previous owners not the new owners. They could choose to just purchase the technology, hardware and even employ the staff to run it all, but the existing subscriptions are as good as dead.

If you think about it how will any prospective buyer purchasing the guide service make any money out of it when everyone currently using it is either a lifetime IceTV subscriber or has many years to go, not all that many people I've seen posting are due to renew any time soon. I remember reading that there are 16500 subscribers, if a large chunk of them are already paid up, then where is their income source.

People have signed up to these 5 years subscription services now, they have been on offer for at least 6 to 12 months now. And many of the hardware items they have sold lately have been with lifetime IceTV as well, Like those lifetime humax deals, and the Skippa too. So again no income stream for the prospective buyer.

No income stream for the foreseeable future means not profitable which means no takeover...I am very hopeful that I'm wrong about it, but I give it a low probability of success for takeover. Who in their right mind would pay money for a business where most of its customers have already subscribed so far into the future or for life, with little chance of income being generated...

The only hope is for someone to purchase the technology and hardware and employ the staff and start over possibly offering existing subscribers a good price for 12 months of service including skippas too, i cannot see them continuing to provide a service to people for free for life once taken over.

Only my opinion.

Offline warkus

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Re: IceTv in Voluntary Administarion
« Reply #121 on: October 11, 2015, 05:34:20 PM »
PS, I too would resubscribe if given the opportunity, I wouldn't hesitate.

But I do consider my existing subscriptions as gone...

The more I look at this situation, the more I see the writing was well and truly there, I guess I just didn't want to believe it...

Extending subscriptions to 10 devices instead of 5
Continuing to offer cheap deals for subscriptions
Offering 5 year deals
Constant delays with Skippa

The list goes on, I feel pretty stupid in hind sight...


Offline Paul55

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Re: IceTv in Voluntary Administarion
« Reply #122 on: October 11, 2015, 07:10:47 PM »
PS, I too would resubscribe if given the opportunity, I wouldn't hesitate.

But I do consider my existing subscriptions as gone..

Add me to the list as well. I think most subscribers would fit in this category.
We would remain pissed off at the stupidity of the Heinz/Skippa debacle and the collateral damage to subscription holders. However, there seems to be widespread agreement that the subscription service is an excellent product worth retaining.

Offline DeltaMikeCharlie

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Re: IceTv in Voluntary Administarion
« Reply #123 on: October 11, 2015, 07:13:01 PM »
All the existing customers are a liability, not an asset, because they expect to receive service (in some cases for many more years) without generating any additional revenue for the company.
IMNSHO, the existing subscription customers are only liabilities until their subscriptions expire and are ready for renewal, then they become assets again.  The best way for a potential buyer to realise that potential cashflow would be to keep the EPG feed alive for as long as it can to allow existing subscribers to resubscribe.

Any organisation that would consider buying the EPG business would have to analyse the current portfolio of subscriptions and evaluate the potential future cashflow to be generated as and when the existing subscriptions are renewed as well as the sale of new subscriptions.

They would surely have to know that positive cashflow would take some time to kick in and that there will be some degree of attrition as some users elect not to renew and build this into their business case.  They can get historical churn rates from the existing owners and make some educated projections.

Perhaps a new owner could also offer "early renewals" whereby existing subscribers could get cheaper/longer/whatever renewed subscriptions if the sign up today.  This would also boost the immediate cashflow.

Offline prl

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Re: IceTv in Voluntary Administarion
« Reply #124 on: October 11, 2015, 07:21:46 PM »
... IMNSHO, the existing subscription customers are only liabilities until their subscriptions expire and are ready for renewal, then they become assets again. ...
Clearly. But in my case that would be nearly 5 years. That really doesn't help much with cash flow here and now.
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Offline emmsee

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Re: IceTv in Voluntary Administarion
« Reply #125 on: October 11, 2015, 07:26:51 PM »
I also would pay to renew to a new owner.
Perhaps it would help if the site admin were to commence a POLL, the,  hopefully,  positive result could be passed on to the money grubbers - oops,  Administrators.

Offline DeltaMikeCharlie

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Re: IceTv in Voluntary Administarion
« Reply #126 on: October 11, 2015, 07:39:19 PM »
Clearly. But in my case that would be nearly 5 years. That really doesn't help much with cash flow here and now.
Let's scribble on the back of an envelope for a sec. . .

I read somewhere that ICE have 200,000 subscribers.

Let's assume that 10% are "lifetime" subscribers and that another 10% fail to renew.

That leaves 160,000 subscribers to generate future revenue.

Let's say that a subscription is $100 annually, that gives us $16m annual revenue.

Assuming that renewals happen fairly smoothly throughout the year, that means about $1.3m revenue per month.

Yes, the assumptions are just that, to do this properly we would need the real data.  Any potential owner would get this real data during their due diligence prior to putting ink to paper.

Offline Chopsus

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Re: IceTv in Voluntary Administarion
« Reply #127 on: October 11, 2015, 07:48:23 PM »
 If and when they do write off existing subscribers, one thing is sure from my perspective: I will not be sucked into a long subscription period again to simply facilitate the new owners running a similar scam, claiming poor and resetting the clock yet again.

What has happened here appears to be a Pondsey Scheme, conning longer and longer subscriptions whilst knowing all along there was little to no intention to fulfill them ... Then there was the ultimate scam grab distraction with the Skippa ... So new, we really don't know if it was all that was promised, or would ever be ... Upper management should be held accountable and jail terms should be on the table, as they knew they were trading while insolvent.

These who were really screwed are the staff ... Most, if not all if us can suck up a weeks lost pay or so (represented by the skipper and lost subscriptions) ... But these guys have lost much more than that and possibly entitlements such as sick leave, LSL, holiday pay and maybe even compulsory super that hasn't been paid.

Again, Managers heads please ... On pikes preferably.

Offline Paul55

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Re: IceTv in Voluntary Administarion
« Reply #128 on: October 11, 2015, 09:56:37 PM »
conning longer and longer subscriptions whilst knowing all along there was little to no intention to fulfill them ...

I choose to believe this was not the case - even towards the end.

Quote
Then there was the ultimate scam grab distraction with the Skippa ...

IMO the Skippa was an over-ambitious, poorly planned and managed mistake, not a scam. However, the lack of honesty in the final couple of months was disgraceful and typical of slick entrepreneurial behaviour.

Quote
Upper management should be held accountable and jail terms should be on the table, as they knew they were trading while insolvent.

Probably warranted, but unlikely to occur. Some hard time might send a message to others who are happy to play fast and loose with other's money.

Quote
These who were really screwed are the staff ... Most, if not all if us can suck up a weeks lost pay or so (represented by the skipper and lost subscriptions) ... But these guys have lost much more than that and possibly entitlements such as sick leave, LSL, holiday pay and maybe even compulsory super that hasn't been paid.

As usual. I wonder how much salary etc. Heinz lost.

Offline GXK

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Re: IceTv in Voluntary Administarion
« Reply #129 on: October 11, 2015, 10:10:29 PM »
https://imia.edu.au/HeinzHerrmann

It is hard to imagine that a person with these qualifications could be undone by the few hundred thousand Ice tv owe the importer (for the 1000 Skippa units).

Something is a bit fishy... I mean even more fishy than I first thought.

Offline peteru

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Re: IceTv in Voluntary Administarion
« Reply #130 on: October 11, 2015, 10:32:26 PM »
The rules for employee entitlement protection have been improved in the last couple of decades, so the risk to employees (besides being suddenly unemployed) are minimal. It is extremely unlikely that employees will run any loses. The same can not be said for contractors, although in my experience, if the exposure is large enough and you get yourself a decent lawyer, you can recover as much as 25-33%. Unsecured creditors are looking at 0-3% return if they are lucky.

As far as the "back of the envelope calculations" are concerned, I'm pretty sure that they are way, way off the mark. Probably at least an order of magnitude inflated, if not two.

Another thing to consider is the assets and intellectual property vested in IceTV. Given the multi-tier structure that has been already exposed, I'd be very, very surprised if the entity known as IceTV Pty. Ltd. (the organisation under administration) owned much. I suspect that any intellectual property would be owned by a different entity and IceTV would be licensed to use that technology. The patents applications that come up against ICeTV are mostly lapsed/ceased. The only patents that have been granted/certified (AU2014101162, AU2013101518) are based on technologies that have been commonly used before the application was made and would be trivially challenged in court. (One really has to wonder about the cluelessness of the institutions issuing patents!) This effectively puts any intellectual property either at an arms distance from IceTV or makes it worthless, thus minimising any positive value in the equation when it comes to winding up the business. We already know that IceTV uses the Amazon cloud hosting infrastructure to provision the services, so there would be minimal hardware assets (not that used computer hardware is worth anything anyway) to dispose of. Or in another words - what is there to buy? As far as I can see, IceTV Pty. Ltd. is a bag of liabilities with no obvious assets to acquire.

If the administrator has another view of the value proposition of IceTV, I'd like to see it, but from where I sit, I see nothing worth investing in. Maintaining the guide will at a minimum involve the capacity to employ at least 4-5 people full time, which will require at least $500,000 per year, perhaps more.

Offline peteru

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Re: IceTv in Voluntary Administarion
« Reply #131 on: October 11, 2015, 10:36:13 PM »
https://imia.edu.au/HeinzHerrmann
:o

That picture is way, way out of date. It barely bears the resemblance to Heinz you'd meet today.

Offline csutak40

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Re: IceTv in Voluntary Administarion
« Reply #132 on: October 11, 2015, 10:59:13 PM »

IMNSHO, the existing subscription customers are only liabilities until their subscriptions expire and are ready for renewal, then they become assets again.  The best way for a potential buyer to realise that potential cashflow would be to keep the EPG feed alive for as long as it can to allow existing subscribers to resubscribe.
Would you really purchase a business with no (or very little) income for about 5 years?   You could get a higher return if you put your money in the bank!

Some of the subscribers have lifetime subscriptions, so if you wanted to honour that as well - there is no income, ever.  There are a few subscribers who kept to the yearly subscription (I know of one)  but I'd say 99% have at least a few years up their sleeve. 
Any organisation that would consider buying the EPG business would have to analyse the current portfolio of subscriptions and evaluate the potential future cashflow to be generated as and when the existing subscriptions are renewed as well as the sale of new subscriptions.
As I said, no one would purchase a business, when the only chance of income is years away. And of course, there are current expenses - wages to pay, etc. 
Besides, some of those subscribers would be a lot more cautious and a lot less trusting in future.  Personally, I jumped at every offer of a "special" deal up till now - I would definitely only purchase 12 months at a time in  future
They would surely have to know that positive cashflow would take some time to kick in and that there will be some degree of attrition as some users elect not to renew and build this into their business case. 
So, why would anyone be interested in a business model like that?

Perhaps a new owner could also offer "early renewals" whereby existing subscribers could get cheaper/longer/whatever renewed subscriptions if the sign up today.  This would also boost the immediate cashflow.
That may work, provided existing subscribers were willing to write off whatever they have paid in the past and re-subscribe anew.   I would be certainly interested, but not in a "longer" deal, as I no longer trust that model.  So, it couldn't be called "renewals" but re-subscribing, as a new company couldn't be expected to honour what ever IceTV had promised
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gas667

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Re: IceTv in Voluntary Administarion
« Reply #133 on: October 12, 2015, 09:14:23 AM »
I believe that the lifetime EPG for my Skippa is gone. I can't believe an Icetv buyer would honour any prepaid subscription or one included with a device.

Having said that I would be prepared to pay a yearly sub if and only if the new company had nothing to do with the owners/board/CEO of the the old company. As long as Icetv isn't just rebirthed.
« Last Edit: October 12, 2015, 09:16:11 AM by gas667 »

Offline GaryT

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Re: IceTv in Voluntary Administarion
« Reply #134 on: October 12, 2015, 09:25:59 AM »
I was initially sceptical and hesitant about the ides of paying for an EPG. However, about 18 months ago when my TiVos started to die I purchased a Topfield which came with a 3 month ICE TV subscription so I decided to give it a go. I was quickly converted, mainly for the ease of use and the fact that I could set up all my programming from one spot (ie the PC) and I now have 3 ICe Tv enabled boxes. As a result I signed up to one of the long term discounted offers. Therefore, at this point I'm out of pocket for the unfilled Skippa order I place in June, (Paypal claim has been lodged) and assumably will be out of pocket for my remaining subscription (about 3 years) on the basis that ICE TV goes the way most people are predicting. ie. It ceases to exist along with the EPG or somebody else takes on the EPG and starts from scratch.

Moving forward, should some organisation take on the EPG component of the ICE TV business and continue to deliver it the way it's done at the moment and assumably not honour existing subscriptions, there's no way I'd sign up again even for a term as long as 12 months. However, should a new provider offer a month to month option, even if that were to work out slightly more expensive than say a 12 month or longer subscription I'd most likely consider it. Simply speaking that achieves two things, firstly subscribers have no long term exposure and secondly, the provider has a regular/steady source of revenue.

I also say this on the proviso that Heinze Hermann and Colin O'Brien have absolutely no involvement in whatever comes out the other side of this mess. From my perspective and based  on what I've personally experienced over the last couple of months and what I've read on the various forums, at the very least these two should finish up facing Fraud based criminal charges. Unfortunately though they will probably not and will disappear under a rock for a year or two, come back out when they think everybody has forgotten what happened and likely, do it all again.

edit - Gas667 you must have posted while I was composing this. It appears we have not dissimilar thinking on this.
« Last Edit: October 12, 2015, 09:29:27 AM by GaryT »

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