By Sara Kovač (Nova24tv)
The Government of Robert Golob is obviously willing to do anything to pay back the media tycoon Martin Odlazek, who helped it win the parliamentary elections. According to our information, the latter wrote to the Bank Assets Management Company (BAMC) and proposed the sale of BAMC’s stake in the company Salomon, which publishes several media outlets, in order to save his empire. The new set of BAMC’s Management Board, with Žiga Debeljak as President, is apparently prepared to do just about anything for Odlazek’s protection. Namely, our source reveals that the BAMC has decided to sell its share of the company Salomon, but Debeljak has not answered any of our questions yet.
The indebted company Salomon, which ended up being partially owned by the Bank Assets Management Company, is apparently returning to its previous master – tycoon Martin Odlazek. In 2021, the BAMC filed a lawsuit, demanding that its 45.39 percent stake in Salomon be increased to 100 percent, and the media outlet Dolenjski list lose its 54.61 percent. According to the Companies Act, the exclusion of a partner is possible if there are good reasons for that, especially if one of the partners is causing economic damages to the other partner.
They want to rush the sale
However, we recently learned that Martin Odlazek addressed a letter to the BAMC proposing the sale of the stake. “He wrote that Boris Novak and Dimitrij Piciga visited him, who told him that they were instructed to destroy him, but that they do not want to do that – instead, they would rather hand over the BAMC share,” our source revealed, adding that it was Odlazek who proposed the sale. “Yesterday, the BAMC decided (the whole thing is, of course, run by Žiga Debeljak) to sell the BAMC share,” we found out, and of course, we need to keep in mind that Odlazek has the pre-emption right. However, as the BAMC lawsuit cannot be withdrawn anymore, they are in a hurry to sell the stake. If the decision on the default judgment happened before the sale, that would mean the end of Odlazek, and they could not go through with the sale.
Since Robert Golob, the long-time President of the Management Board of the Gen-I energy company-turned-Prime Minister, is the chosen one of the deep state, it is not surprising that Debeljak has taken the position of the President of the BAMC Management Board. Namely, he is a man whose business path was allegedly paved by the last head of the Communist Party of Slovenia and former President of the Republic, Milan Kučan, and lawyer Miro Senica. Thus, as a key actor of the deep state, Debeljak was given the task of rescuing the media tycoon Martin Odlazek, who is among those responsible for Golob’s victory, and thus, of course, the victory of the deep state.
Odlazek’s media empire contributed to Golob’s victory in the elections – and the time has now come to pay him what he is owed
If we think back to the events before the elections, we can recall that a whole bunch of various scandals connected to Golob arose around that time, but they did not generate a big media response because the mainstream media decided not to report on these matters. And if they did, their reporting was very limited – more in the sense of creating an impression that the affair is actually just “another fabrication of the centre-right pole” and the number one enemy of the deep state – Janez Janša. One of the most deserving people that helped ensure this is undoubtedly also Odlazek, as the Salomon company is behind several media outlets, such as Radio Salomon, the sports newspaper EkipaSN and the magazines Jana, Vklop, Zvezde/Lady, Salomonov oglasnik and Salomonov ugankar, according to the Ministry of Culture. Salomon is part of the media group Media24 (owned by Svet24, which is owned by Odlazek’s ex wife Alena Nardini), according to its website, and its range of media includes, among other things, the printed media Svet24, Reporter, Novi tednik and Dolenjski list, several radio stations, including Radio Aktual, Radio Celje and Radio Veseljak, and the web portals of these media outlets. Salomon is also a 19 percent shareholder in Večer media, which also publishes the newspaper Večer.
In one of the episodes of the show “The Hour of Power” (“Ura moči” in Slovenian) on Planet TV, political analyst Peter Gregorčič revealed that Golob’s government is preparing some legislation that would apparently lead to the Bank Assets Management Company and the Slovenian Sovereign Holding merging, thus opening the door to even more personnel placements in state-owned companies. He expressed the belief that this was happening due to Odlazek. “As far as I know, Šarec’s government owned part of Odlazek’s property in his Salomon company (45.39 percent).” According to Gregorčič, this was a very interesting contract – it stipulates that Odlazek has the pre-emption right, and in case he cannot buy the share, he has the option to veto the sale. This actually means that the tycoon had some financial leverage for state money. “And according to my information, Franci Matoz was appointed non-executive director because it turned out that he was the only one capable of understanding what happened in the first instance.”
As already mentioned, the BAMC filed a lawsuit in 2021, demanding that its 45.39 percent stake in Salomon be increased to 100 percent. Namely, BAMC accused Dolenjski list, which is a 54.6 percent shareholder in Salomon, of violations and damaging transactions between it and the related parties since 2012, including on issued guarantees, as well as taking over unsecured receivables, transferring property and shares between related parties, and taking out loans, which the defendant took out from commercial banks and then lent at lower interest rates to companies in the Martin Odlazek system or his family. The BAMC complained that its rights as a minority owner were limited, and at the same time, there were supposedly even some violations of the media law. Dolenjski list allegedly committed serious violations within Salomon, which resulted in poor mutual cooperation in the field of Salomon’s management. The court handed down a judgment by default. However, the law firm representing the interests of Dolenjski list did not submit the answer to the court within the appropriate deadline.
Dolenjski list is owned by the company Eurofit, in which Odlazek has a 44 percent share, while Gašper, Domen, Nejc, Liza, Tina, Maja and Meta Odlazek have an eight percent share each, according to data from the Agency of the Republic of Slovenia for Public Legal Records and Related Services.
On the 4th of June, the newspaper Delo revealed that the Novo mesto District Court ruled in BAMC’s favour in its lawsuit against Dolenjski list regarding the partnership in Salomon, so BAMC is likely to become the sole owner of Salomon. However, since the ruling has not yet been made final, it can still be challenged with an appeal. As expected, Odlazek announced that he would file an appeal at the time, which in practice means that he bought himself some time. In the case of BAMC’s share being sold in the meantime, this would be more than an appropriate payment for the services provided by Odlazek during the parliamentary elections’ political campaign, which ultimately led to this government’s victory. And since the allegations presented by our source are outright scandalous, we decided to check if they are true with the President of BAMC, Žiga Debeljak. We will publish his response as soon as we receive it.