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International Internet Magazine. Baltic States news & analytics Tuesday, 21.05.2019, 04:41

Recess called in airBaltic shareholders meeting; Flick must step down

Alla Petrova, BC, Riga, 29.09.2011.Print version
A recess has been called in the National airline airBaltic shareholders meeting today. The meeting will continue after the shareholders – the state of Latvia and Baltijas aviacijas sistemas (BAS) – sign agreement on the conditions for increasing the airline's share capital. This could happen in the next few days, as state representative, Transport Ministry's State Secretary Anrijs Matiss, and BAS representative Inga Piterniece told reporters.

The meeting was constructive and it appears that the talks are nearing completion, said Matiss. The text of the agreement is now being harmonized by both sides' lawyers and financial experts, reports LETA.

The talks are complicated and require scrupulous work to be done, said Piterniece. Now, however, the airBaltic shareholders have reached agreement on a wide range of issues, "and the airBaltic saga could come to an end in a few days," she said.

airBaltic Vice President Janis Vanags told Nozare.lv that participants in the meeting had decided to reach agreement on technical matters by Sunday, so the state and BAS could invest a total of EUR 153 million into the airline.

The meeting could resume on October 4, when the shareholders will meet again to finalize airBaltic share capital increase, after they will have reached full agreement on technical details of the deal.

Matiss also said that no candidates for work on airBaltic board had been nominated as yet. Several prospective candidates have been approached, but they have not yet accepted the offer.

Newspaper "Diena" previously wrote that the new airBaltic board could include the airline's chief operations officer Laila Odina or chief financial officer Martins Antonovics.

Matiss did not deny that a new head could be appointed for airBaltic already this week.

airBaltic current CEO, Bertolt Flick also participated in the airBaltic shareholders meeting today through videoconferencing to inform the shareholders about the current situation in the airline.

According to Flick, the situation is satisfactory, said Matiss. "Mr. Flick did not speak of any risks in the near future."

As reported, both sides agreed previously that Flick would step down as airBaltic CEO, and that airBaltic shareholders agreement, which – in many experts' opinion – is not in the interest of the state, would be terminated. Nevertheless, technical problems regarding funds for increasing the airline's share capital have not yet been solved.

 

Before the meeting, Transport Ministry State Secretary Anrijs Matiss told reporters that the agreement between the shareholders had still not been reached, but declined to provide additional comments.

 

35 minutes after the meeting began, Matiss emerged from the room to tell reporters that the meeting could not be held due to a lack of quorum. airBaltic minority shareholders' representatives were present during the meeting, including Baltijas aviacijas sistemas (BAS) board member Inga Piterniece. However, the other BAS beneficiary – Andrey Rudeshko – was not represented at the meeting.

 

Shortly after, Piterniece informed that the meeting was now quorate as Rudeshko's representative had arrived.

 

After arriving though, Rudeshko's representative left to consult with Rudeshko about the conditions of the shareholders' agreement.

 

Matiss informed that the shareholders have agreed that the airline's president Bertolt Flick must step down. They have also decided to terminate airBaltic shareholders' agreement.

 

However, there are some technical problems regarding the funding necessary for the airline's share capital increase. At the moment, they are being tackled, said Matiss.

The talks continue and it is possible that airBaltic shareholders' meeting will still be held today.






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