Huta Częstochowa at Crossroads Again - Report
Business Insider Polska reported that a court decision may soon launch another tender for the purchase of Huta Częstochowa. The court decided that
in November the receiver is to announce the terms of a new tender for the purchase of Huta Częstochowa. Everything indicates that in order to become its owner, Sunningwell will have to stand for the next tender in a moment. Although in October it seemed that Sunningwell would buy the steelworks after several months of efforts. If there is another tender, Sunningwell may have competition. If Sunnigwell has to bid again, it must find financing. In a letter to Jarosław Gowin, the company's president admits that it is not easy due to the pandemic. He informs the deputy prime minister that so far he has used his own funds and capital from abroad.
Sunningwell International Polska, the current lessee of the Częstochowa plant since September 2019, is willing to take over and had hoped that the state would help him in the takeover and claims that he had specific declarations. Sunnigwel president Mr Marek Frydrych said “We leased the plant, launched production, and after the elections, we were forgotten. Politicians made promises, politicians did not keep their promises. My patience is slowly coming to an end, because we are investing a lot of money and energy in this project, and without us Huta Częstochowa would have gone bankrupt long ago, and people would have lost their jobs.”
In the first tender, no one was interested in the plant. In the second, which was supposed to be decisive - the only bid for PLN 220 million was made by a company from the Sunningwell group. However, the transaction was not finalized because Sunningwell did not pay the full amount on time. Last year, Sunningwell made a PLN 245 million purchase offer in the so-called pre-pack, with the backing of the creditors' board. The court rejected the proposal, announced the bankruptcy of the plant and at the same time, wanting to save it, decided to lease it. Sunningwell seemed to be the favorite in the race to take over the steel plant because he had a pre-emption right under the lease. The interest in the plant was also expressed by Ukranian Metinvest and Liberty House subsidiary Corween Investments.