Agrokor: Court Issues Ruling on Claims, Still No Decision on Voting Rights

Lauren Simmonds

The total sum of the foreseen principal claims for the time being (before the end of litigation period) amounts to a huge 31 billion kuna.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 15th of January, 2018, the Commercial Court in Zagreb announced the final decision on claims in the Agrokor case yesterday.

According to the findings in the conclusion of a very comprehensive document, the amount of claims in the settlement process hasn’t altered significantly in the period for the challenging of claims recognised by Agrokor’s government-appointed extraordinary commissioner, Ante Ramljak.

As the ruling states: “the extraordinary commissioner has admitted (accepted) creditor claims in the amount of 41.45 billion kuna, and has disputed the sum of 16.43 billion kuna.”

In addition to the situation which involves recognised and disputed warranties, as well as contingencies and insurance requirements, it has been concluded that creditors have challenged claims in the amount of 10.4 billion kuna, and that “the total sum of the principal claims established for the time being (prior to the completion of litigation period) is 31.04 billion kuna. “

All in all, the announcement of the final decision has become much more clear and the dynamics of the procedure are detailed below.

Fom now onwards, the first thirty day statutory term in which the extraordinary commissioner should propose groups of creditors (at least five) to the creditors’ council will run. After that, the deadline for the next 90 days will be allocated to allow the creditors to elect their representatives to the body authorised to approve the draft resolution. However, in the opinion of one competent lawyer, it’s unrealistic to expect the groups without legal regulation to easily define their respective representatives.

“As the procedure obviously comes late, the only solution left is to communicate with the extraordinary commissioner and the advisers through the self-organisation of the creditors in order to prepare the settlement,” stated the lawyer.

In addition, the question as to whether the court will take a stand on whether or not the creditor has the right to vote on the basis of claims pending during the proceedings or will be given the right to vote on the basis of past insolvency, which means that the vote will be counted with the amount of undisbursed claims, has naturally been raised.

The question of voting options when it comes to disputed claims is an unusual consequence of the numerous holes in Lex Agrokor, which didn’t foresee the possibility of the re-determination of claims due to partial settlement during the proceedings.

The Commercial Court emphasises that by this ruling “it has not decided on the specific right of vote that the creditors will receive in the vote on the acceptance of the settlement, nor has it decided on the concrete settlement of the creditor (this will depend on the compromised settlement which is to be prepared extraordinary commissioner, along with the creditors’ council).

Namely, “the resolution primarily decided on the claims of creditors who hadn’t been challenged either by the extraordinary commissioner or by other creditors”, which highlights the explanation of the withdrawal of Adris group, Sberbank of Russia, RCB Bank Limited and several members of the VTB Group.


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