Announcement from LBI on Nordic Partners
- Landsbanki Íslands hf. (LBI) is in the process of appropriating the entire asset portfolio of Nordic Partners.
- A Latvian-based management team, lead by Daumants Vitols, has acquired holding of 51% of NP Limited's share capital.
- Other Nordic Partners assets to be appropriated by LBI are 5 Dornier jets and 3 hotels in Copenhagen, Denmark, including the Hotel D'Angleterre.
- The assets are being managed by the bank with the intent of maximising recovery. New ownership of NP Limited will lead to increased efficiency. The hotels in Denmark will continue to be operated; there are no plans for speedy divestment and the aim is to wait for market conditions to improve in order to achieve a better sale price. The same applies to the jet aircraft.
NP Limited has been established to manage the assets of Nordic Partners in the Baltic States and Poland. Involvement by prior owners has thereby ceased, with the exception of Latvian CEO Daumants Vitols, who previously held an 11% share in Nordic Partners. The Latvian management team is expected to make every effort to strengthen the operations of NP Limited and increase the company's value. The assets consist mainly of Latvian food producers and real estate companies. Market conditions in Latvia are very challenging and it is the bank's opinion that the greatest potential for recovery lies in having local people lead the development. In this way, creditors' interests are best served.
It is clear that LBI hf. can expect substantial losses on the Nordic Partners assets since their value has decreased through the economic crisis, as has universally been the case. In addition, some of the assets were purchased at a high price. It is difficult to assess the extent of losses at this time; final figures will not actually be available until all assets have been sold. Due to conditions in the domestic market, Latvia presents the greatest difficulty. Disposing of assets in that country will foreseeably take the longest time.
LBI hf. has devoted a great deal of work to re-organising the assets of Nordic Partners and is of the opinion that changes in ownership in Latvia represent a step in the right direction. The bank will continue organised and ongoing monitoring of the assets and management thereof will be aimed at maximising their value.
Czech durable food processor Hamé, previously owned by the same parties, has been re-organised and is performing well. Hamé is not part of Nordic Partners and its operations have been managed through a special company. Re-organisation was lead by Czech banks who provided the company with capital to improve its position. LBI participated in the re-organisation process and continues to monitor the company.