In a personal statement, Marcel Boekhoorn reacts on Monday evening to the agreement that HEMA has concluded with creditors, as a result of which he is no longer in the picture as owner. "The way this has been done is a bit wry for us because we are now forced to sit on the spare bench."
"I have been an admirer of HEMA all my life," Boekhoorn begins, what he calls, personal statement on the site of his investment company Ramphastos. "The way in which the various owners have dealt with HEMA in recent years has always bothered me."
Boekhoorn acknowledges that there was far too much debt when he became the owner of the HEMA at the end of January. "The most annoying thing I found was that this fault was wrongfully with HEMA," says Boekhoorn. "After all, the debt was not caused by financing the (always profitable) activities of HEMA, but by buying those activities. I found and think that this is an unhealthy way of working that burdens the company with too great a burden."
"The motto seemed to be the motto"
Boekhoorn says that it was difficult to manage the debts because the company was owned by a large group of unknown players due to the stock exchange listing. "In addition, debt is governed by US law, and most bondholders are actually Americans. This is reflected in the highly detailed debt documentation that demonstrates a certain degree of relentlessness. Pay or take it off seemed to be the motto."
HEMA has entered into an agreement with creditors who have united. Loans of € 750 million are outstanding with the relevant creditors. That amount will be reduced to EUR 300 million. "Debt reduction was successful today," says Boekhoorn. "This is fantastic for HEMA and all its stakeholders and I am very happy with it. HEMA has a historic new chance for a future with a decontaminated balance: a largely removed millstone."
"The group of bondholders will acquire all the shares of HEMA BV", the retail chain writes on Monday and is therefore no longer owned by Marcel Boekhoorn. "The way this has been done is a bit wry for us because we are now forced to sit on the spare bench," says Boekhoorn. "We are not used to that. I will continue to follow it closely in the near future."