GALA BURSA CONSTRUCTIILOR - 2018
BURSA 15.12.2014

ADINA ARDELEANU, LOREDANA DUMITRAȘCU (Translated by Cosmin Ghidoveanu)
 
mărește imaginea
     According to the report of the prosecutors, business people Dragoș Bîlteanu and Najib el Lakis have embezzled money from SIF Banat-Crișana, by acquiring "Azuga Turism", with the help of lawyers Nicolae Mergeani and Victor Prodan, and the proceeds of that deal went towards increasing their stake in SIF1, exceeding the legal holding cap of 5%.
     Dragoș Bîlteanu and Najib el Lakis were detained last Monday, following searches that the prosecutors of the DIICOT conducted at the offices of SIF Banat-Crișana, SIF Muntenia and Swiss Capital, and arrested on Tuesday, for 30 days, in a case containing charges of embezzlement, stock market manipulation and money laundering.
     The investigators showed that "Azuga Turism", spun off from Romenergo SA, controlled by Gheorghe Bîlteanu (father of Dragoș Bîlteanu) and Nabil Lakis (brother of Najib Lakis), became the property of SIF Banat-Crișana - where Dragoș Bîlteanu served on the Board of Directors - via Romenergo Holdings Limited, through a procedure which was intended to cause the trail of the company go cold.
     To summarize, prosecutors think that Dragoș Bîlteanu operated as follows: a stake of 96.87% of Azuga Turism was sold to an off-shore - Mergina Holdings Limited (which according to the report of the prosecutors, appointed Lakkis Ep. Ammar Lakkis Sahar - the sister-in-law of Nabil Lakis, brother of Najib El Lakis, as the beneficiary of the account of the tourism company). The company was then sold to Fratelli Azuga (later renamed to Torch Invest, controlled by lawyers Nicolae Mergeani and Victor Prodan), from where it ended up in the portfolio of SIF1.
     Given the origin of "Azuga Turism" and his position of CEO of SIF1, Bîlteanu may have been involved in a conflict of interest.
     With the money it got in exchange for the stake in Azuga Turism, "Torch Invest" bought shares in SIF1 from "Industrialexport" and "Romenergo", companies acting in concert with the Bîlteanu-Lakis group, and, in the end, "Torch Invest" was acquired by "Mergina", according to the investigators.
     In August 2013, the representatives of SIF Banat Crișana sent a statement to the press in which they said that the acquisition of "Azuga Turism" was not performed using an affiliate person, which, in light of what the prosecutors claim, is false.
     In October 2013, Dragoș Bîlteanu told "BURSA", in an interview:
     "Concerning Azuga Turism - this acquisition was made during the term of the previous Board of Directors, after I took over the position of chairman (ed. note: while Bîlteanu was acting CEO).
     This is an acquisition that we have worked on for several months, it has been thoroughly documented through due-diligence both with our in-house experts, as well as through outside consultants, and we think that the price it was concluded at was very good for the SIF (a significant discount of approximately 50% compared to the evaluation of the company's net assets). "Azuga Turism" owns significant assets in the Azuga resort, namely the modern gondola lift (its most important asset, valued at a relatively low price compared to the other similar investments in the area), several important plots of land in the best areas of the resort, a hotel with all the required facilities, as well as several public catering facilities. The company has no difficulty in repaying the outstanding part of the bank loan, which is insignificant compared to the value of its assets".
     * The route followed by "Azuga Turism"
     "Azuga Turism" was incorporated in 2011, being spun-off from "Romenergo" SA, taking over the real estate assets of Azuga, as well as a loan of 16,067,150 lei from BRD, contracted by Romenergo SA, controlled by Romenergo Holdings Limited. The prosecutors maintain that Gheorghe Bîlteanu (father of Dragoș Bîlteanu) and Nabil Lakis (brother of Najib Lakis) are the real beneficiaries of Romenergo Holdings Limited, which would suggest that they are the owners.
     The investigators state that "Azuga Turism" was sold to "Romenergo Holdings Limited" by off-shore company "Mergina Holdings Limited Nicosia" for an estimated 1 million Euros, in May 2012. The representatives of Azuga Turism filed with BRD a statement concerning the true beneficiary of that company's account: Lakkis ep. Ammar Lakkis Sahar, the sister-in-law of Nabil Lakis (brother to Najib El Lakis), judicial sources say.
     In July 2013, "Mergina Holdings Limited" sold "Azuga Turism" to "Fratelli Azuga" SRL București (later renamed SC Torch Invest SA and controlled by lawyers Nicolae Mergeani and Victor Prodan - see insert), in exchange for approximately seven million Euros, of which a downpayment of 250,000 Euros was paid, and the rest was going to be paid in installments, and in February 2013, "Azuga Turism" was sold to SIF Banat-Crișana in exchange for 20,340,000 lei (approximately 5 million Euros), which was paid immediately, according to the report of the prosecutors.
     Torch Invest used the money it was paid by SIF1 to repay a loan of 250,000 Euros to Nicolae Mergeani and to buy shares in SIF Banat-Crișana from the stock market.
     "By corroborating the bank transactions with the stock market trades, it was found that the amounts that SC Torch Invest SA received from SIF Banat-Crișana SA were used to buy shares in SIF Banat - Crișana SA once again from entities controlled by Bîlteanu Dragoș-George and El Lakis Najib, thus concealing the concerted holdings which the law no. 297/2004 prohibits, but by using funds that belonged to SIF Banat-Crișana", the prosecutors' report states.
     According to the investigators, one such example would be the acquisition, by "Torch Invest" of 2,442,000 SIF1 shares from Industrialexport SA and Romenergo SA, which had reported their acting in concert with Dragoș Bîlteanu and Najib Lakis, as well as the fact that they had exceeded the 5% holding cap in the SIFs. After the transaction, the group pared down its holdings, to 4.55%.
     At the end of March 2013, "Torch Invest" held 2.51% of SIF Banat-Crișana. Its stake had remained the same, according to a report on June 30, 2014, according to the sources.
     Investigators note that the final stage of the agreement between Dragoș Bîlteanu, Najib El Lakis and Nicolae Mergeani consisted of having "Mergina Holdings Limited" acquire "Torch Invest" SA, through the conversion into shares of the receivable it had against it, as a result of the sale of "Azuga Turism", as no installment had been paid, which is what should have happened according to the initial agreement.
     After the acquisition of the block of shares from "Azuga Turism", SIF Banat-Crișana participated with 9,180,310 lei in the share capital increase of the company, amount which would have been used to repay the loan that Romenergo had taken out from BRD and which had been taken on by "Azuga Turism", upon the spin-off, according to the judicial sources.
     In order to hide the connection between the purpose of the share capital increase and the real beneficiary of the operation, in 2013 a refinancing loan from Banca Transilvania was taken out in April 2013, the report further mentions.
     In the case, the prosecutors of the DIICOT are also making charges of market manipulation in the case of transactions made in September 2013, as well as of embezzlement from SIF1 through the investment in the Globalworth fund, created by Greek businessman Ioannis Papalekas, who subsequently acquired the Bucharest Tower Center (of Victoriei Square) building, of which half was owned by Dragoș Bîlteanu.
     SIF Banat-Crișana denied that information, by telling us that it has never traded, owned nor does it currently hold any shares issued by Globalworth Real Estate Investments.
     Prosecutors show that the facts were committed as SIF Banat-Crișana and SIF Muntenia are selling the stakes in Erste and BRD (liquid and profitable), in order to raise cash to carry out their own interests, to the detriment of minority shareholders.
     The investigators also claim that Dragoș Bîlteanu owned more than 25% of SIF1 together with other shareholders, thus having control of the company.
     The shares were owned through Oshia Holdings Limited (4.99%), Aris Capital SA (4.55%), Macelia Investments Limited (4.4%), Monticlifti Management Limited (2.53%), Torch Invest SA (2.51%), Smart Capital Investments (4.45%) and SIF Muntenia (2.18%).
     Given these circumstances, it seems that the Bîlteanu group has behaved as if the 5% holding cap had already been lifted and it was hoping they would become compliant once it would be.
     The dropping of the holding cap in the SIFs was proposed in the first version of the draft for amending the capital market law, announced by the Ministry of Finance on October 7th, but it was removed from the next version of the draft (November 7th).
     In September 2013, Monticlifti Management Limited SRL sued SIF Banat-Crișana, demanding the reduction of the quorum requirements for the general shareholder meetings, in line with the provisions of the law no. 31/1990 concerning Romanian companies.
     One month later, the Board of Directors of SIF Banat-Crișana decided to reduce the company's share capital, based on article of the company's bylaws, according to a report sent to the Bucharest Stock Exchange.
     At the time, there were multiple opinions which claimed that the reduction of the share capital of SIF1 without holding a General Shareholder Meeting was illegal, and the ASF later did not allow the operation to proceed.
     In the last two years, SIF Banat Crișana has not paid out dividends.
     According to some sources, the losses in this case amount to approximately 14 million Euros. 

     *  The executive management of SIF1 announces that it will summon the shareholders, in compliance with the request of the ASF
     The management of SIF1 Banat-Crișana announced on Friday, that it would take the necessary steps to convene a shareholder meeting within 30 days, as requested by the Financial Oversight Authority (ASF), after the latter withdrew the authorization of Dragoș Bîlteanu for serving on the Board of Directors of SIF Banat-Crișana (SIF1), and denied the application for the authorization of Najib El Lakis for a position on the Board of Directors of SIF1.
     Through a communiqué signed by vice-president Ștefan Dumitru, the Board of Directors announces that it has set restrictions on the capacities of deputy CEOs, as Dragoș Bîlteanu has also lost the position of CEO. SIF1 has also announced that the Board of Directors will meet as a matter of urgency whenever necessary.
     *  How "Fratelli Azuga" became "Torch Invest"
     "Fratelli Azuga" was incorporated in June 2012, having as shareholders Daniel Caramihai and Nicolae Mergeani, with equal stakes. According to the prosecutors, the company had its registered headquarters at the address of law firm SCP Mergeani, Prodan și Asociații, , who also state that in the beginning of 2013, Victor Prodan was co-opted as a shareholder, with a stake of 20%, and the other two shareholders reduced their holdings to 40% each. Prodan later acquired the stake of Caramihai. In February 2013, the company changed its name to Fratelli Invest SRL, and in March became Torch Invest, and changed its registered office in April 2014, the prosecutors further state.
     *  The charges of manipulation
     The case of the embezzlement from SIF1 Banat-Crișana also contains charges of market manipulation, in the case of trades which took place in September 2013.
     At the time, the quote of SIF1 rose spectacularly in the last moments of the Friday, September 13th session, and on Monday, September 16th, 2013, a block of shares of 6.27% was transferred at a price 14% higher. At the time, the ASF announced that it was investigating the trades in question, and it later notified the DIICOT.
     In March, the Financial Oversight Authority (ASF) levied fines of 70,000 lei at Swiss Capital, for the trades in question.
     Also in March, the ASF forced the group of SIF Banat-Crișana shareholders made up of Dragoș Bîlteanu, the CEO of SIF1, El Lakis Najib and companies Romenergo, Smalling and Gardner (registered in Cyprus), presumed to be acting in concert, to sell 6.72% of the shares of SIF1 and thus comply with the holding cap of 5%, within three months.
     At the time, Dragoș Bîlteanu said that the decision of the ASF was abusive. In October, the group announced it had paired its stake to match the legally allowed limit.
     In proving the acting in concert, the ASF took under consideration that Smalling Limited and Gardner Limited had bought shares in SIF Banat-Crișana with funds borrowed from firma Cahuita Limited. The real beneficiary of Cahuita Limited was Ali H. Lakis from Lebanon, according to information supplied by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission and obtained with the help of Bank of Cyprus, the decision of the ASF states.
     Ali H. Lakis was also a member on the Board of Directors of SIF1, and Najib El Lakis and Dragoș Bîlteanu declared themselves as acting in concert with "Romenergo".
     According to the information sent by the ASF, Gardner Limited held 3.21% of the shares of SIF1, whereas Smalling Limited held 3.94%.
     Ali H. Lakis resigned from the Board of Directors of SIF1 on December 5th.
     In March, Dragoș Bîlteanu told us that he had no information about the holdings of Smalling Limited and Gardner Limited or whether any of those companies had bought the blocks of shares of SIF1 traded on September 16th, 2013.
     In September 2013, market sources told "BURSA" that Sibiu businessman Alin Tatu had sold his 5% stake in SIF1 Banat Crișana, following the transactions made on the "Deal" tier of the BSE, after the spectacular rise of the stock.

 
 

 
Readers' comments    [ add a comment ] 
Trimite părerea ta.
Nume (maxim 50 caractere)
E-mail (optional)
Titlu (maxim 50 caractere)
Mesaj
 
REGULAMENTUL MESAJELOR
Acord
Prin trimiterea opiniei ne confirmați că ați citit regulamentul de mai sus și că vă asumați prevederile sale !
Aceeasi sectiune (English Section)
Calendarul BURSA 2018
Ediții precedente
Newsletter Facebook Twitter YouTube LinkedIn RSS
Jurnal Bursier
20.06.2018
BVB
     * Circa jumătate din volum, realizat cu titlurile Banca Transilvania și BRD - Groupe Societe Generale
     
     Acțiunile tranzacționate la Bursa de Valori București (BVB) au înregistrat, în mare parte,...  click să citești tot articolul
19.06.2018
BVB
     * Volum de numai 21,6 milioane de lei
     
     Piața principală a Bursei de Valori București (BVB) a avut parte de un început de săptămână negativ, majoritatea cotațiilor suferind deprecieri în ședința...  click să citești tot articolul
18.06.2018
BVB
     * Creșteri pe linie pentru toți indicii bursei
     
     Volumul consemant în ședința de tranzacționare de vineri a Bursei de Valori București (BVB) a fost de numai 17,7 milioane de lei (3,8 milioane de...  click să citești tot articolul
18.06.2018
BURSELE DIN LUME
     Bursele din Europa au scăzut vineri, oprindu-se din avansul generat joi de anunțul Băncii Centrale Europene (BCE) privind încheierea, anul acesta, a programului de achiziții de obligațiuni. Cele...  click să citești tot articolul
15.06.2018
BURSELE DIN LUME
     Bursele din Europa au urmat un curs ascendent ieri, după ce Banca Centrală Europeană (BCE) a anunțat că va menține dobânzile la un nivel scăzut încă un an.  click să citești tot articolul
14.06.2018
BVB
     * Salt de 12,44% pentru SIF Moldova, ca urmare a aprobării programului de răscumpărare de acțiuni la un preț cu mult peste cel din piață
     
     Volumul consemnat în ședința de tranzacționare de la...  click să citești tot articolul
Cotații Internaționale

Curs Valutar

Curs valabil din data de 19 iunie 2018
1 Dolar australian...
1 Leva bulgărească...
1 Dolar canadian....
1 Franc elvețian...
1 Coroană cehă...
1 Coroană daneză...
1 Liră egipteană...
1 Euro...
1 Liră sterlină...
100 Forinți maghiari...
100 Yeni japonezi...
1 Leu moldovenesc...
1 Coroană norvegiană...
1 Zlot polonez...
1 Rublă rusească...
1 Coroană suedeză...
1 Liră turcească...
1 Dolar S.U.A...
1 Rand sud-african...
1 Real brazilian...
1 Renminbi chinezesc...
1 Rupie indiană...
100 Woni sud-coreeni...
1 Peso mexican...
1 Dolar neo-zeelandez...
1 Dinar sărbesc...
1 Hryvna ucraineană...
1 Dirham emirate arabe...
1 Kuna croată...
1 Bahtul thailandez...
1 Gram aur...
1 DST...
AUD
BGN
CAD
CHF
CZK
DKK
EGP
EUR
GBP
HUF
JPY
MDL
NOK
PLN
RUB
SEK
TRY
USD
ZAR
BRL
CNY
INR
KRW
MXN
NZD
RSD
UAH
AED
HRK
THB
XAU
XDR
2.9804
2.3859
3.0532
4.0578
0.1806
0.6262
0.2260
4.6663
5.3256
1.4384
3.6793
0.2387
0.4926
1.0813
0.0630
0.4524
0.8469
4.0420
0.2909
1.0785
0.6244
0.0592
0.3629
0.1953
2.7918
0.0395
0.1530
1.1005
0.6320
0.1231
166.2749
5.6898
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
..Lei
click aici pentru cursurile pieței valutare - istoric
English Section
19.06.2018
     The Romanian Constitution:
     Art. 80 - The role of the president
     (1) The Romanian president represents the Romanian government and is the guarantor of national independence, unity and territorial integrity.
     (2) The Romanian president must watch for the compliance with the Constitution and the good functioning of the public authorities. For that purpose, the president serves as a mediating entity between the powers of the state, as well as between the state and society.  click here to read the entire article
12.06.2018
     The reunion scheduled today between Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un is taking place in Singapore due to the relative neutrality and the security this city-state provides. Singapore is one of the few countries that still hosts a North-Korean embassy, and many of the deals of the Kim regime were conducted here, according to the foreign press.  click here to read the entire article
05.06.2018
     "It is a good thing that the public doesn't understand the functioning of our banking and monetary system, because otherwise I think there would be a revolution in the streets by dawn".
     HENRY FORD, founder of the American automotive industry

     Fed up with subsidizing the commercial banks with their own money, the Swiss, mobilized through the "Sovereign Money" initiative, have proposed the organization of a Referendum which will be held on Sunday, June 10th 2018 - is a historical referendum, revolutionary for the banking industry, of international resonance -, by which the initiators want to amend the Constitution, which would impose to the commercial banks to grant loans only within the limits of the bank's money, forbidding them to issue scrip money and ensuring the monopoly of the Confederation (of the Swiss state) on issuance of money free of debt.  click here to read the entire article
23.05.2018
     The "pension apocalypse is coming"! The more or less qualified keep talking in the written press, TV and on the radio. The uncertainty is being preserved - deliberately by some, by the government members out of pure stupidity!  click here to read the entire article
16.05.2018
GABRIELA MIHAELA VOICILĂ, THE BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT MINISTER:
     Where there are many entrepreneurs there is creation, where there are many women entrepreneurs there is divine creation, says Gabriela Mihaela Voicilă, state secretary in the Ministry for the Business Environment, Trade and Entrepreneurship (MMACA). In her opinion, entrepreneurship means joy, a better situation, but less time for the family: "Taken together, entrepreneurship means achievements (...) Every one of us needs validation, for having built, having created something".  click here to read the entire article
14.05.2018
IN THE LAWSUITS AGAINST THE BANKS
     * Piperea: "In the Andriciuc case, the EU Court of Justice has not limited its argumentation to the CHF, but expanded it to cover any currency for which the debtors weren't hedged"
     The courts in the country have begun ruling in favor of borrowers and freezing the value of the European currency at the exchange rate valid on the date the loans were originated, in the lawsuits brought against the banks.  click here to read the entire article
09.05.2018
IN THE ROMANIAN BANANA REPUBLIC...
     The urge "Mircea, act like you're working!", back in the days of the so-called revolution of December 1989, was brought back recently by a new "director".
     We are talking of course, about the meeting between NBR governor Mugur Isărescu, and a government "delegation" led by chamber of deputies chairman Liviu Dragnea, together with PM Viorica Dăncilă.
     Sources from within the PSD, quoted by ziare.com, have claimed that, "in the meeting with the NBR governor, Liviu Dragnea seemed to be looking for a way out, and he seems confused, as he didn't expect his decisions to lead to such effects in the economy".  click here to read the entire article
08.05.2018
     Liviu Dragnea's insistence in moving the Romanian embassy from Tel Aviv, to Jerusalem, feeds an older, widespread confusion. Much older. Politically, Jerusalem has been divided from the first presence of the Judeans on the lands of the Palestinians, since back in the days of Abraham and Abimelec. "The indivisible Jerusalem" wanted by Benjamin Netanyahu is a spiritual creation.
     Definitely, pilgrims and locals claim that Jerusalem has a geography, meaning that the city would be compatible with the cardinal points and that is why Palestinians, Israelis and people overall, including those of the UN, EU and the US, speak about Eastern Jerusalem and Western Jerusalem, without anybody being surprised that that is happening at the center of the world, where the god of the Judeans began his creation, starting from the very rock from which later Archangel Gabriel raised Mohammed to visit Heaven, the same place of origin where one of the seven angels "and showed me the Holy City, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God." (Apocalypse, 21: 10), where God is one of the same.  click here to read the entire article
03.05.2018
     Financial fair play is a concept that comes from the world of soccer. The notion is simple, don't spend more than you earn in a month, or in a year, regardless of what shareholder, mogul or investor enters the business.  click here to read the entire article
03.05.2018
     President Klaus Iohannis has announced that he has decided to send to the Constitutional Court the laws on the judicial system, but also to the Venice Commission. The president has issued a call to the CCR not to hurry and to work with the European entity, saying that after the Constitutional Court gets to issue an opinion on the new laws, a new analysis of the laws will be conducted and it will be decided then if a new reexamination of the three laws in the Parliament will be needed.  click here to read the entire article
27.04.2018
     The dystopia of 2169 seems to be 151 years away from us, if we were to watch the American sci-fi movie "In Time", in which New Zealand screenwriter, director and producer New Zealand Andrew M. Niccol has imagined a world in which money has been replaced by the lifespan left and each individual over 25 years old (when they stop aging), are wearing a counter on their arm, displaying how much they have left to live; the economic system relies on transactions paid in lifespan - banks, loans, interest rates - the rich are storing billions of years, while the poor only have hours, minutes or seconds left and when their time is up they die suddenly, as if struck by a mace.  click here to read the entire article
25.04.2018
DEPUTY PRIME-MINISTER VIOREL ȘTEFAN:
     * Bogdan Chirițoiu: "The European Commission will force the future buyer of Sidex Galați to increase the output of steel"
     ArcelorMittal may only sell the Galați metallurgic plant with the explicit agreement of the Romanian state, and the European Commission will ensure that the output of the plant will increase after the transaction, deputy prime-minister Viorel Ștefan said yesterday, in a conference on the issue of major industrial energy consumers.  click here to read the entire article
20.04.2018
     * "Iliescu on trial for all the bloodshed!" was one of the powerful slogans of the University Square, as well as "Iliescu - KGB, go back to the USSR!".
     We, who had organized the marathon protest of the century, knew who Ion Iliescu was, as the rest of the Romanian people took a long time to catch on, even Brucan was wrong in his estimate that the much maligned "stupid people" would take two decades to "awake".  click here to read the entire article
16.04.2018
     * - The Syrian gas attack did not exist, the American missiles were brought down, then where are the dead coming from?!
     * - It is enough to tell Syrians that they are attacked and killing each other?
     Friday, Syria was attacked by war attacks, in which a warship of the United Nations which operate in the Red Sea (according to the American officials), American B-1 bombers, four British Royal Tornado GR4 aircraft (which fired Storm Shadow missiles) and French Rafale jets.  click here to read the entire article
12.04.2018
     New Delhi, March 4th, 2017 - I am in the garden of the Royal Plaza hotel, sitting next to the table of a group of Indians, probably Hindus, two women in colorful saris and two men, all of them in their fifties. They are checking me out, I catch them doing it a few times. A Romanian manea, with heavy Indian influences starts playing from the speakers, I am surprised, I start laughing.  click here to read the entire article
.