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Bankruptcy decision on Benko delayed until March

Bankruptcy decision on Benko delayed until March
Signa Holding founder Rene Benko
Image: (APA/HELMUT FOHRINGER)

The parties must submit further documents, according to a statement from the regional court. The insolvency judge gave the parties until March 5th to do this.

  • also read: Close confidant: Benko “a broken man” after Signa bankruptcy

According to the regional court, the insolvency court will then have to decide whether the prerequisites for insolvency are met. The non-public hearing had previously lasted around an hour. Benko himself did not have to be present and – as expected – did not show up. Neither insolvency judge Hannes Seiser nor Benko’s lawyers nor the representative of the financial prosecutor’s office, Anselm Fuchsbauer, made any statements afterwards – as they did at the beginning of the meeting. The media interest in the regional court was certainly there, but not exceptionally great, which probably had something to do with Benko’s assumed non-appearance.

Credit protection association does not expect a quick decision

The situation and the financial situation should be discussed in the meeting. The APA had learned in advance that the Benko side would in any case make a confession of assets. Ultimately, it must be determined whether insolvency actually exists. If this is not the case, the insolvency application will be rejected. On the one hand, the application is based, among other things, on the fact that the Tyrolean investor did not fully meet his obligation to make a deposit of 3 million euros in the holding company’s restructuring process. And on the other hand, that there are open financial claims against him.

  • Also read: After filing for bankruptcy against Benko: what happens next

However, the credit protection association KSV1870 did not expect a quick decision. In fact, this will probably “take a few weeks,” regional manager Klaus Schaller announced in a broadcast on Tuesday afternoon. As an “experienced insolvency judge”, Seiser now has to assess whether the reason for insolvency “insolvency” actually exists. To do this, he had to look through a “considerable amount of documents and evaluate them accordingly”.

Benko must “immediately certify to the court that there is only a delay in payments,” said Gerhard Weinhofer, managing director of the creditor protection association Creditreform Austria, to the “Kurier”: “If he cannot do that, the court must assume insolvency.”

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