Pecik exits AE&E takeover talks

Time seems to be running out for struggling industrial firm A-Tec Industries AG as potential investors keep abandoning negotiations.Austrian businessman Ronald Pecik confirmed today (Fri) he saw “no sense” in acquiring A-Tec’s subsidiary Austrian Energy & Environment (AE&E) because of its high debts and liabilities.This announcement comes after Hong Kong-based merchant banking company Mass Financial Corp (MFC) said yesterday evening it stopped takeover talks. South Korean businessmen ruled out they would get involved just a few days earlier.Officials handling A-Tec’s bankruptcy proceedings stressed earlier this week that AE&E “urgently needs” 15 million Euros to continue doing business. Many business analysts said they were surprised that a large firm like A-Tec was apparently unable to provide one of its subsidiaries with such a comparably small sum to ensure a continuation of day to day business.A-Tec – which has almost 12,000 employees – achieved an annual turnover of three billion Euros in 2009.A-Tec’s creditor banks decided after lengthy talks with leaders of the ailing firm last week that they would not provide immediate financial support.Reports have it that creditors want A-Tec CEO Mirko Kovats to invest millions of private assets into the company. The Austrian who was born to a family of Hungarian immigrants reportedly ensured that his fortune would not be tapped in possible bankruptcy procedures by stashing it in a complex network of foundations.Kovats holds a 66.6 per cent interest in the industrial firm with his private M.U.S.T. foundation and is understood to be willing to hand over 25.1 per cent of this share.The businessman made an international name for himself by taking over financially struggling or broke companies across the world to sell them at a profit after getting their finances in order – often with drastic cost-cutting and sacking regimes.AE&E works council officials said earlier this week that A-Tec’s “extreme expansion policy” was to blame for the dismal condition the company and its subsidy seem to be in.Staff representatives stressed firms interested in investing in AE&E must present their concepts soon to put employees’ minds at rest.