Банкеръ Weekly

Briefs

THE SECONDARY NON-FERROUS METALS PLANT PRIVATISATION TO BE INITIATED

There are candidates for all five autonomous parts of the Plovdiv based non-ferrous metals plant (KCM), which were announced for sale, said Rozin Anguelov, the company legal expert. KCM was privatised in July 2000 by the MEBO unit KCM-2000. Now the new owner makes an attempt to sell the assets not involved in the company major activities. The parts offered for sale are the mechanical repairs shop and the building repairs shop, Autotransport, Metalurgremont (the metallurgy repairs unit) and the oxigen production unit.
When the sale of these autonomous parts was announced in the end of 2000, it was assumed that the respective MEBO units will take part in the privatisation of all assets announced for sale. Besides them, however, some other companies based in Sofia and Plovdiv will also take part in the bidding. This week the expert commission has found all offers in compliance with the seller's terms. Negotiations with candidates will open on May 20, and according to Anguelov's forecasts the first deals will be signed in the beginning of June. So that within a month the secondary privatisation will be initiated.
For 1Q of 2001 KCM profit amounted to BGL2.387MN, said Mara Roussinova, PR Director of the company. For the same period revenues amounted to BGL53.104. Just for comparison, in 2000 the plant reported sales for more than BGL190MN
Yet, the optimistic results will hardly be confirmed in the months to follow. The reason is the sharp fall of plumbum and zinc prices at the international markets. While in 2000 the price of a ton of zinc at the London Commodity Exchange varied between USD1060 and USD1200, now it is just USD946. Within two months the plumbum price dropped by some 10% to USD461/T.
At this background KCM will probably face financial difficulties, having in mind they will have to service their liabilities to the Japanese Bank for International Cooperation and to the Black See Trade and Development Bank. They amount to totally USD60MN.
In July 2000 KCM-2000 bought 80% of KCM assets for USD14.635MN. Two months ago the MEBO unit acquired new 10.19% of the plant and at present it owns 90.19%. The remaining shares are owned by workers, and a small number of the shares were used as property restitution means. About 40% of KCM-2000 shares are owned by 18 top managers of the plant. Besides them, the Dutch Traffigura Becheer, owner of 26% of the MEBO unit capital, can also control the company activity.

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