The downfall of elumeo SE, operator of Juwelo TV, self called “the leading European online retailer of high-quality gemstone jewelry” reaches the point of no return. Thailand Labour Courts, under the Labour Red Case No. Ror 473-596/2562, case filed by hundreds of former workers of PWK Jewelry Limited, fully owned subsidiary of elumeo SE, granted the ex-workers the right to confiscate all PWK’s assets, including the land and the factory building. For eluemo SE the troubles are far from over, since this is a “forced liquidation” and the workers will sell their seized assets well below market price. The difference to the debt will remain in the books of elumeo SE.
This court order came as a surprise: not just machinery and office equipment can be confiscated by the workers, but also the factory building and the land it stands on. As the Court Order states: “The executing officer would like to announce that the Labour Court Region 2 has the writ of executing to confiscate the assets of the 5 Defendants. Now, the executing officer has already confiscated the asset of PWK Jewelry Company Limited – Defendant No.1 , which is the Land Title Deeds No. 62236; Land No. 61, dealing file No. 2267, Chanthanimit, Muang Chanthaburi, Chanthaburi, with buildings”.
Current events in Thailand appear to show that the management of elumeo SE has lost control of the situation. This is a final blow to the already troubled elumeo SE, which under Wolfgang Boy’s chairmanship was dragged into a web of criminal investigations, fraud, lawsuits worth of millions of EUR, affecting lives of hundreds of people which were left with unpaid salaries and legal settlements. After this point, even the utopian “solvent liquidation” ordered by elumeo’s Executive Board, and which was never sustained by any real facts turns into a clear impossibility.
With the physical factory in the Thai province of Chanthaburri gone and over 600 jobs lost, the conditions of the tax holiday, which was granted by the Board of Investment in Thailand, are violated. The Thai tax authorities are likely to claim back Millions of Euro for unfulfillment of the conditions of the tax holiday granted to the Thai elumeo subsidiary PWK Juwellery Limited. This would be an additional burden in the books of cash strapped elumeo SE.
It is probably a task for a special auditor or for the prosecutor’s office to investigate the decisions and actions of the Executive Board of elumeo, which, apart from Wolfgang Boy, includes Gregor Fabender-Menzel, Anette Bronder, Ingo Stober, Bernd Fischer (criminally investigated together with Wolfgang Boye), Boris Kirn and Frank Broer. Their decisions led to this situation, and who the Executive Board assessed that a “solvent liquidation” of PWK could be possibly conducted using as liquidity assets under mortgage, VAT to be recovered in several years and offsetting dividends for profits never made but on paper, as well as for exported and unpaid for jewelry,
Market observers wonder about the role of the single members of elumeo’s Board of Directors and whether the Board members, who are well remunerated, are fulfilling their supervisory board duties. OSH as the one of the initial shareholders believes that the Executive Board of elumeo is as responsible for this situation as the Executive Directors (of which two are already criminally investigated for fraud, both in Germany and Thailand). Furthermore, OSH believes that the refusal to appoint a special auditor to look into this whole devastating situation is, at least, curious and rises numerous question marks regarding the legality and transparency of elumeo’s management’s actions.
The questionable and troubled management is still upheld by the support of Raik Hoffmann of Frankfurt Performance Management AG (FPM) who repeatedly refused any suggestion of OSH and clearly stated his support for the criminally investigated Wolfgang Boy.
In fact, in December 2018, Mr. Hoffmann and other shareholders voted against OSH’s proposal to invest, without any guarantees on elumeo’s side, a fresh breath of capital into the company, up to 15 million EUR, in order to save the situation generated by Wolfgang Boy and the Executive Director’s management. They simply dismissed the fact that the whole system can collapse – unfortunately, today, being proven wrong. In December 2018, Raik Hoffmann also voted in favor of removal of two Board Members who were questioning the legality of Mr. Boye’s actions and who were also pushing for the appointment of a special auditor or at least, of a third-party legal audit on all the deeds of Boye’s management. Even at that time, Mr. Boye was refusing access to company documents and data, to the Board Members questioning his decisions, affecting the legality of the Executive Board function.
Together with the company assets, elumeo’s last chance to settle at least any portion of the debt, the personal assets of PWK Directors will be gone, all because of elumeo’s so called “solvent liquidation”. In fact, the Executive Board of elumeo ordered the “solvent liquidation” without any sound financial plan or forecast, reputedly asking the PWK Company directors to come up themselves with a “meaningful plan” for liquidating a company that had tens of millions of EUR in unpaid jewelry, which Wolfgang Boy tried to offset against dividends for profit just made out on paper.
OSH reiterates its decision to follow all legal paths of uncovering the deeds that led to this catastrophe and hereby is asking the Executive Board Members, which are not criminally investigated, respectively, Gregor Fabender-Menzel, Anette Bronder, Ingo Stober, Boris Kirn and Frank Broer to carefully respect and watch their legal duties as Board Members and don’t be caught in any potentially questionable acts.
Picture is available at epa