The Slovenia Times

Sava approves merger with hotel operator

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Hoteli Bernardin, 87% owned by Sava Turizem, will decide about the merger tomorrow. The merger agreement was signed in December, entailing that Hoteli Bernardin become a part of Sava Turizem and cease to exist.

Under the contract, Hoteli Bernardin owners will get 1.0473 shares of Sava Turizem for every share their own, whereupon the latter will issue EUR 16.8 million worth of new shares, increasing its assets to EUR 56.5 million.

Combined, Sava Turizem own six hotels on the sea coast and the lake resort of Bled, a camp and spas in Moravske Toplice, Radenci and Ptuj.

The two companies are a part of the government's plan to establish a tourism holding and the merger is seen as step closer to setting up the new caretaker of state investments in the tourism sector.

The merger is not yet final, as the decision taken today will be challenged by the Association of Small Shareholders over concerns that the merger will damage the assets of small shareholders.

The shareholders of Sava Turizem and Hoteli Bernardin were initially expected to approve the merger in late January, however, the shareholder meetings had to be postponed because the core company Sava did not yet obtain agreement from all creditors.

Meanwhile, the Sovereign Holding (SSH), the custodian of State Assets, and one of the key owners of Sava, has brokered a deal with York Global Finance to buy the fund's 43% stake in Sava and outstanding claims.

This is to significantly increase the state's share in Sava. At the moment, the SSH and the state-run fund Kapitalska Dru┼żba hold a combined share of 46% in Sava.

The newspaper Delo reported today that the SSH paid EUR 50 million to York Global Finance for its share, including EUR 10 million in claims. Neither the SSH nor the fund confirmed this information for Delo.

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