The figure nearly doubled expectations for the sale of plant and machinery from the failed J.G. Taylor Group at the Thainstone Centre near Inverurie.
But it is still unclear how much of the money will go to trade creditors
The three main divisions of the group – Mintlaw-based Les Taylor Contractors, sister company J.G. Fowlie and Ellon skip hire and quarry firm Grampian Building Contractors – had combined debts of more than £13m, based on estimates provided by directors.
Civil engineering firm Les Taylor Contractors is responsible for £12m of the debt.
That figure includes £4.2m owed to the Bank of Scotland and secured against all three companies.
A total of £7.7m is due to unsecured creditors who have been told they can expect to see up to a third of the cash owed to them.
Receiver Ernst and Young has still to sell the group’s headquarters near Mintlaw, Longbog Quarry at Newmachar and land the firm owns at Fetterangus.
Joint receiver Colin Dempster told the Press and Journal: “We can confirm the sale attracted a significant amount of interest. It marks an important milestone in the realisation of assets for the benefit of the companies’ creditors.”
The sale was one of the biggest handled by Thainstone Specialist Auctions, a subsidiary of the ANM Group. Hundreds of people flocked to the site as more than 600 lots went under the hammer.
The vast array of machinery, including wheeled excavators, heavy trucks, four-wheel-drive vehicles, cars and quarry equipment, was lined up for viewing at the centre.
A spokesman for the ANM Group said yesterday it had been “a very good sale” but could not confirm how much money had been generated.
Final figures will not become known until all transactions are completed. Before the auction, organisers had expected to raise about £3million.
Receivers laid off 178 staff in January after being called in to Les Taylor Contractors and J.G. Fowlie.
Another 20 jobs were lost after administrators were called in days later to Grampian Building Contractors, which the late Les Taylor bought for £11.6m just three years ago.
Les Taylor Contractors bought J.G. Fowlie, which specialises in demolition and asbestos removal, in 1997.
The firm was almost sold as a going concern after the joint receivers were brought in, but none of the three offers was considered good enough.