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Full purchase price for Zsolnay stake transferred

Manufaktúra-Befektető has transferred the full amount of the purchase price for a 49% stake in troubled Hungarian porcelain maker Zsolnay a week before the deadline, Pecs mayor Zsolt Páva told journalists on Wednesday.

Manufaktúra-Befektető transferred the remaining HUF 175 million of the HUF 230 million purchase price, Páva said. The company will inject several hundred million forints more into Zsolnay by the end of this year, he added.

Manufaktúra-Befektető signed a contract to buy the stake in Zsolnay, one of Hungary's most famous porcelain makers, a year earlier for HUF 230 million and a promise to inject a further HUF 500 million into the company. Manufaktúra-Befektető's owner at the time, Gellért Jászai, chairman of property developer SCD Group, hoped to help Zsolnay return to the building materials market, where the company enjoyed a prominent place a century earlier. But Manufaktúra-Befektető had trouble borrowing the money to pay for the purchase and the local council extended the deadline for making the transfer from March to May. Days before the deadline, Hungarian construction company KOZGEP said it would buy Manufaktúra-Befektető from Jászai. The local council, again, set a new deadline for transferring the purchase price. KOZGEP said it saw the acquisition not only as a financial investment, but wanted to participate in implementing the company's strategy at a professional level too.

Zsolnay, with more than 150 years of accumulated knowledge and experience, is a unique investment opportunity, Páva said