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Australian studio Big Ant goes into liquidation (update) [Correction]

Big Ant goes into liquidation

Correction: This article originally reported that Big Ant Studios Pty Ltd had gone into liquidation. We would like to offer correction that the company that went into liquidation was in fact B.A.S. Melb Pty Ltd – a company that was formerly known as Big Ant Studios Melbourne Pty Ltd. until its name change in November 2012. Big Ant Studios Pty Ltd's director is Ross Symons, who was also the former director of B.A.S Melb Pty Ltd until May 2012. B.A.S Melb Pty Ltd and Big Ant Studios Pty Ltd are separate entities and the liquidation of the former has no relation to the latter.

Australian game development studio Big Ant, best known for its work on the AFL Live, Rugby League Live and Rugby League Live 2 sports titles, has gone into external administration and will be liquidated, according to a filing with the Australian Securities Exchange Index (ASIC).

Kotaku Australia reports that the 30-person, Melbourne-based studio currently has debt exceeding $6.7 million and it is unclear what will happen to the studio, its staff and the cricket IP is had been working on.

In an ASIC filing obtained by Polygon, documents reveal that the company filed for voluntary liquidation on Nov. 28, 2012 and S&Z Insolvency was appointed the liquidator. The documents reveal that Big Ant Studios owes its unsecured creditors $6,656,648.62 and it owes secured creditors an additional $79,767.94. The company's total debt to creditors is $6,784,453.34.

The majority of its debt is owed to Big Ant Studios (R&D), which comes to $2,838,000 and an investment company associated with Big Ant exec Frank Colautti called Eastbeth Services Pty Ltd, which is owed $1,017,000. The company's own director, Ross Symons, is also owed $508,619.

We have reached out to Big Ant Studios for comment.

Update: In a statement sent to Kotaku Australia, Big Ant CEO Ross Symons said despite the liquidation of the company, no jobs will be lost and that the move is part of a restructuring of the business. The statement reads:

"There has been a restructure of a business that was not profitable, the vast majority of the debts are to the shareholders of the company including myself. All staff are securely employed and we continue to make games."

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