Zsolnay could face liquidation, minority owner ready to take over
Not long after Zsolnayʼs majority owner Bachar Najari aired concerns of a “hostile takeover”, Hungarian state-owned Development Bank (MFB) has decided to launch a liquidation procedure against the porcelain maker, if the company fails to comply with the repayment scheduled on a HUF 413 million loan which matured in August, Hungarian daily Népszabadság reported today.
The local council of Pécs, which is the minority owner, already set up a company with the name Ledina Kerámia to take over the operation of the porcelain manufacturer if it is liquidated, Népszabadság reported.
The daily said Najari had transferred the foreign rights to the Zsolnay brand to a company owned by his wife, Hungarian news agency MTI reported. Zsolnayʼs liabilities have grown to HUF 900 mln and its headcount has been cut from 220 to 150, Népszabadság added.
Najari, a Syrian-born businessman who acquired a 74.5% majority stake in the company from now minority owner Pécs local council in 2013, in statement earlier aired concerns about what he believes could be an “intended hostile takeover” supported by “representatives of the minority owner”.
After airing these concerns, the majority owner announced at a general meeting that he had initiated the squeeze-out of the companyʼs minority owner.
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