Банкеръ Weekly



The Supreme Administration Court (SAC) stopped the deal for the divestiture of Balkancar-Sredets on May 2, and on Monday (May 15) events followed which had already become an almost obligatory element of the domestic privatisation picture. The workers from the electric trucks manufacturer protested and the Minister of Economy and Energy Roumen Ovcharov entered into a word battle with court. Before reaching the present stage the procedure could had won the deal of the year title with the negotiated price of BGN91.1MN - more than 4.5 times up from the initially set BGN20MN by the Privatisation Agency (PA).
Were I a court I would be offended when someone like Zagora CAR, rated third in the tender, filed an appeal against the procedure for the divestment of Balkancar-Sredets, said Krassimir Dachev, BoD Chairman of GTM - Angel Balevsky. That company offered the highest purchase bid and was chosen to buy 69.99% of the enterprise's capital. It presented more than 12,000 pages of documents as evidence into the PA, showing what it produces and what its exports are. Mr. Dachev said nothing stated in the appeal was true.
According to him, the delay of the privatisation because of the procedure's cancellation by the court has already showed its negative impact on the plant and is just extending the agony of the enterprise.
The Executive Director of Zagora Car, Roumen Radev, claims that the appeals against the divestment procedure are at least nine, including such from candidates which the PA has not admitted to take part in the tender. He added that the appeal of Zagora Car was directed against the procedure's lawfulness. The company's lawyers say there is an opportunity for holding a new tender or continue the present one. However, Mr. Radev admitted he was not questioning the comparison of parameters, offered by the candidate buyers.
The privatisation of Balkancar-Sredets is again in the hands of the court. Whatever its ruling is, the future of the enterprise again depends on its quick decision. Because the loss of BGN323,000 for the first quarter of this year and orders for 10 machines it could be well declared in liquidation if no good buyer turns up.

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