The Swiss Times - Swiss News in English

Debt restructuring moratorium for Globus parent company extended

It could take a little longer before it becomes clear what will happen to the Globus department store group. Signa Retail Selection AG, through which René Benko's Signa conglomerate holds the Globus shares, has been granted an extension of the debt-restructuring moratorium.

The provisional debt-restructuring moratorium will now expire on June 5, according to a publication in the Swiss Official Gazette of Commerce (SOGC) on Thursday. Previously, the District Court of Zurich had only granted the debt-restructuring moratorium until April 5. Signa Retail Selection AG had requested the extension of the deadline itself. However, it is customary for debt-restructuring moratoriums to be extended if necessary.

Signa Retail Selection AG holds 50 percent of the Globus Group. The other 50 percent is held by the Thai Central Group. It is assumed in the industry that the Central Group, which owns numerous other luxury department stores in Europe, will take over Globus completely. As the collapse of the Signa empire gathered pace in the fall, the Central Group announced that it would support all of its European luxury stores regardless of the position of its joint venture partner.

In addition to Globus, Signa Retail Selection AG owns a number of other retail chains and department store groups, or participations in them. However, this is just one of over two dozen Signa companies based in Switzerland. Some of them are bankrupt, others are being liquidated and a provisional debt-restructuring moratorium is in place for some in order to examine the restructuring of the companies or the continuation of business activities. The situation is similar for many other Signa companies in other countries. The parent company Signa Holding, based in Austria, is also involved in insolvency proceedings and even company founder Benko has filed for insolvency.

©Keystone/SDA

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