Thursday, 5 November 2009

Damas: Abdulla brothers to repay $165m over 18 months

Source: 4 Nov 09
Former Damas CEO Tawhid Abdulla.UAE jewellery retailer Damas International on Wednesday announced that the three Abdulla brothers have given a formal commitment to repay $165m they owe the company over the next 18 months.
The payment schedule is part of the formal settlement agreement between the Abdulla family and Damas, in respect of the repayment of unauthorised transactions that led to the resignation of Tawhid Abdulla as CEO last month.
The Abdulla brothers have undertaken to pay $55m within 6 months; an aggregate of $110m within 12 months; and the total within 18 months.
The company added that should auditors PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC) discover further unauthorised payments as part of their investigations, repayments would need to be paid within two years.
The Abdullah brothers produced a list of assets that are potentially available for liquidation to be converted by them into cash to meet their obligations.
These included real estate investments in the Middle East and North Africa (including a number of residential and commercial buildings and units in the UAE) and an investment in a shopping mall in Turkey.
As part of the settlement agreement, the Abdulla brothers have also pledged 350 million of their shares in the company that would be transferred in whole or in part back to the company in the event of the terms of the settlement Agreement are breached.
Last month, PWC was appointed by the board of the company as an independent auditor to examine unauthorised transactions conducted by former CEO and MD Tawhid Abdulla.
The appointment of PWC follows the formation of a separate committee to examine the transactions in detail.

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