A Metricon home

Australia’s biggest builder Metricon is understood to be in crisis talks, just days after the sudden death of its founder and chief executive Mario Biasin.  

The company, an early adopter of the Green Star for Homes program, is understood to have more than 6000 homes under construction and to employ 2500 staff.

Among its pipeline of projects is $195 million worth of contracts with Victoria’s state government, The Guardian reported late on Wednesday including Victoria’s ambitious “big build” public housing infrastructure program.

However, a Victorian government spokesperson told The Fifth Estate on Wednesday night said that there was no involvement from Metricon on 115 modular social housing homes across regional Victoria.

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It also has public housing contracts with New South Wales and Queensland governments.

Industry sources have consistently blamed the federal government’s Homebuilder program for an unstable building industry that’s experienced massive price hikes for building materials and created labour shortages under surging demand for new buildings, renovations and a huge infrastructure program across the country.

The pressures forced the collapse early this year of Probuild and Condev.

Social media on Wednesday reported anecdotal evidence of stalled Metricon housing projects.

The chief executive of Master Builders Victoria Rebecca Casson told The Guardian that the industry association was “aware that there are rumours about the future of Metricon” but was optimistic about the company’s future.

She also encouraged Metricon’s clients and suppliers to be “kind and patient with them as they navigate through these unprecedented challenges.”

KordaMentha was tipped to be appointed as administrator if the company collapses.

News.com on Wednesday night quoted the Sun Herald saying that “sales staff within the company were being instructed to increase cash flow by securing more deposits” and that the company was renegotiating contracts to deal with industry pressures.

“Acting chief executive officer Peter Langfelder denied the company had solvency issues and said the business continued to be viable,” the report said.

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