The recent bid for Romania’s chemical producer Oltchim, which attracted only three buyers and for which submitting offers were delayed until Thursday, September 20, attracted comments from Romania’s prime Minister Victor Ponta, who publicly referred to one of the bidders as having an “exotic offer.” The PM’s comments hinting that media mogul and politician Dan Diaconescu’s bid is dubious and perhaps not possible.
Ponta said the Oltchim bid was not in the best possible state, as one of the offers is exotic and Chimcomplex, the other bidder, is too small to take over the company. “However, irrespective of the final result, we will not accept an offer which will mean losing jobs and breaking up Oltchim. The situation is very difficult,” said the Prime Minister.
If none of the offers received are satisfactory, Oltchim will enter special administration, as a short term solution, while on the long term, the aim would be to find a strong investor.
“Politically, I would not be against Dan Diaconescu’s investment (in Oltchim). Anyone who saves jobs is welcome,” said the PM. Politician and businessman Dan Diaconescu filed an offer to take over Olcthim, saying he will get the money by raising it from the people. Diaconescu, leader of the People’s party Dan Diaconescu (PP-DD), is also the owner of the OTV tv channel.
The two other offers from Oltchim came from PCC, currently minority shareholders in the company, and from Romanian investor Stefan Vuza, via Chimcomplex. The bid deadline was delay from Monday to Thursday this week to allow Russian investor Gazprom to study the offer more, after Dan Diaconescu filed a law suit hoping to block the privatization process.
Diaconescu asked the court to cancel the Emergency Ordinance that approved the privatization procedure, which now includes a RON 1.8 billion (just over EUR 400 million at the current exchange rate) debt to the Authority for State Assets Recovery (AVAS). Diaconescu submitted two more requests on September 17, asking for the cancellation of privatization procedures and the suspension of all privatization measures until the court has decided on the first request.
(photo source: gov.ro)