Björgólfur Thor Completes ISK 1,200 Billion Settlement

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Björgólfur Thor Completes ISK 1,200 Billion Settlement

Björgólfur Thor Björgólfsson.

Björgólfur Thor Björgólfsson. Photo: Geir Ólafsson.

Icelandic tycoon Björgólfur Thor Björgólfsson announced on Wednesday that he and his investment company Novator have completed their settlement to debtors, mostly international banks, including Deutsche Bank, worth a total of ISK 1,200 billion (USD 10 billion, EUR 8 billion).

Icelandic banks and their subsidiaries have been paid ISK 100 billion in the settlement process. All of the payments were in foreign currencies and no debts were written off, as Björgólfur had vowed when the settlement was first announced in July 2010, he maintains in a statement.

“I have said many times that debts cannot be settled unless people have real assets to pay with. I certainly had large debts at the time of the collapse [in 2008] but I also had high credit and safe collateral,” the statement reads.

Without naming anyone, Björgólfur goes on to criticize fellow businessmen, who also were big players in the Icelandic economy in the years leading up to the collapse.

“The Icelandic banks certainly provided too few people with too high loans. And worse, many of those who obtained the highest loans never had any real assets but rather virtual assets on paper, which they acquired through virtual trade with their partners. It has come as no surprise that they haven’t been able to pay their dues,” the statement continues.

Viðskiptablaðið reports that in line with the settlement agreement Björgólfur made with his debtors, many of his personal assets, including real estates, a private jet and a yacht, were claimed by his debtors.

The agreement included that Björgólfur would continue to hold shares in companies such as Actavis, Play, CCP and Verne Holding, which would serve as collateral for the remaining debts. The sales value of these companies would be part of the settlement.

According to kjarninn.is, Björgólfur managed to escape personal bankruptcy. Furthermore, through the increase in value of his shares and profitable sales agreement of his companies, the tycoon is yet again extraordinarily wealthy.

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