About the Authors

Robert and Karl

Robert and Karl met during 2008 while working on a mining transaction. They quickly recognised that they had the ability to “think outside the box”. Thereafter they met again when Karl acted as a business rescue practitioner and required Robert's expertise on a new case.

It was whilst sitting in Counsels’ Chambers in Durban that Robert and Karl came to the realisation that the intention of the authors of Chapter 6 of the Act dealing with business rescue were not being dealt with. The intention of the Chapter is to assist the business to return to profitability. They realised that the concept of “rescue” must relate to saving the business, so as to protect the employees’ jobs and assist creditors to recover the money owed to them. They both had come to the realisation that many of the major financial institutions did not appreciate business rescue, which they saw as stalling or interfering with the liquidation process of a troubled business. Moreover the terribly confined drafting of the Act has led to an enormous amount of expensive litigation, which generally does lead to the protection of the employees or their trade creditors. 

Certain judgements given on business rescue made no sense, while the Act envisaged that business rescue should be about saving the company and for the greater economic good, as the best legal “convincer” won the day in swaying the judgement.

Robert and Karl decided to develop an empirical analysis methodology to see what the writers of the Act really intended. In other words what are my obligations and rights and what should I consider as conditions to do so? While we don’t express any views on the judgements made in any of our books, we invite the reader to see how often judges choose to read a “may” as a “must” or the other way around. Hopefully these books will make the law more accessible to you, regardless of whether you have a passing interest in the law, are a director, a practitioner or a lawyer.

We will complete the collection of books for the Companies Act but have already received requests to write books on other legislation such as the Labour Relations Act and Environmental Law. For now we have to understand what the law really says about corporate actions.

Robert Appelbaum(56) BA LLB (Wits)

Robert is a very business-minded attorney specialising in Mergers and Acquisitions and Corporate Actions and has been doing so for 30 years. He is also the honouree business representative of I E Singapore. 

Robert

Karl Gribnitz (49) B Com, B Com (Hons) (RAU), M Com (Unisa) FCIS

After completing his undergraduate studies in investment management, Karl wrote a master’s thesis on the effect that the change in frequency in cash flow has on the calculation of the time value of money. Karl has been involved in various corporate actions since 1995, including takeovers, mergers listings and business rescue as a senior business rescue practitioner.

Karl