Signa founder René Benko:

Work for the public prosecutors

Photo: DPA

Creditors of the insolvent Signa Group have been worried about their money for weeks. Now a group of international and institutional donors have filed a complaint with the public prosecutor's office for economic crimes and corruption (WKStA) in Vienna. They demand that the money flows of the past few months be urgently investigated by the public prosecutor's office: The subsidiary Signa Development had already carried out some "illegal transactions" before filing for bankruptcy on December 29th, according to the 22-page letter, which was obtained by the "Financial Times “ is present. Around 662 million euros flowed from Signa Development to indirect shareholders and sister companies without there being any economic reason or reason for this. These payments would have to be examined and checked by the WKStA.

The holding company of the insolvent real estate and trading group Signa will no longer be managed under self-administration by the previous management. It was said that

insolvency administrator

Christof Stapf

would take over the business. This will make it easier to coordinate the three insolvencies of the holding company and its important real estate units Signa Prime and Signa Development.

Signa Development includes, among others, the KADEWE in Berlin, the Chrysler Building in New York and the Selfridges department store in London. Signa Development's tasks included, among other things, developing and reselling construction projects. In times of low interest rates, when Signa's business was still running, the development division was the group's cash cow. In the complaint, the creditors argue that the group's structure may have been "deliberately opaque." Important information for creditors was not passed on until the bankruptcy filing. A total loss of deposits is possible.

A spokesman for the WKStA in Vienna confirmed that they had received some criminal complaints from creditors in connection with the Signa bankruptcy. The spokesman did not want to address the specific allegations made by the institutional creditors against Signa Development.