BUSINESS IN SHORT

Plot thickens in Tipos case

IT HAS EMERGED that the ongoing financial claims against the state lottery company Tipos could climb to Sk2.3 billion (€76.4 million). On December 8, the private Cyprus-based company Lemikon, which is believed to be controlled by Czech multi-millionaire Radovan Vítek, withdrew from an agreement with Tipos which was supposed to have settled the issue of know-how transfer to the Slovak state-controlled company, the Hospodárske Noviny financial daily wrote. Know-how transfer was at the heart of a court case from which the claims arose.

IT HAS EMERGED that the ongoing financial claims against the state lottery company Tipos could climb to Sk2.3 billion (€76.4 million). On December 8, the private Cyprus-based company Lemikon, which is believed to be controlled by Czech multi-millionaire Radovan Vítek, withdrew from an agreement with Tipos which was supposed to have settled the issue of know-how transfer to the Slovak state-controlled company, the Hospodárske Noviny financial daily wrote. Know-how transfer was at the heart of a court case from which the claims arose.

Apart from about Sk1.9 billion (€63.1 million), which Lemikon was awarded following a ruling by the Slovak Supreme Court, it can also demand, on the basis of the settlement agreement with Tipos, an additional Sk400 million (€13.3 million) as a penalty for Tipos’ failure to pay the full sum by the end of November 2008. The fact that Lemikon has now pulled out of the agreement does not, reportedly, change Tipos’ liability to pay the penalty. According to a lawyer from an international legal office quoted by Hospodárske Noviny, the terms of the settlement agreement have now lapsed except for the fine and the obligation to pay the court-ordered damages.

The Supreme Court ruled in August that Tipos should, by the end of November, pay Sk1.9 billion (€63.3 million) to Lemikon. The decision was the culmination of an eight-year legal case originally launched by Czech lottery company Športka alleging that Tipos had stolen Športka’s know-how; during the case Lemikon took over Tipos's debt to Športka.


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