TALLINN - In a recent ruling, Estonia's Supreme Court has obliged NG Investeeringud (NG Investments) to double the amount of money it paid minority shareholders for their interest in Liviko, an alcohol producer. The court rejected an appeal by NG Investeeringud in the dispute over the purchase price of Liviko. In accordance with the court's decision, NG Investeeringud has to pay Amaterasu, a company owned by Heldur Meerits, 30.3 kroons (1.94 euros) for each share purchased.
The investment company had paid minority shareholders 17.5 kroons per share.
Amaterasu argued the method of calculating the takeover price, saying NG Investeeringud based its calculations on the book value of Liviko shares, while the proper way would have been on discounted cash flow.
Lower-level courts originally ruled against Amaterasu, but the Supreme Court returned the case to the second-instance circuit court for revision.
In reviewing the dispute, the circuit court sided with Amaterasu and conceded that to determine the takeover price of Liviko, applying the discounted cash flow method would be justified.
NG Investeeringud contested the circuit court ruling, but the Supreme Court upheld it Nov. 2.
Meerits told the Baltic News Service that in the light of the Supreme Court decision, it would be logical for NG Investeeringud, which became the sole owner of Liviko as a result of the takeover, to pay all minority shareholders whose shares it acquired the difference between the takeover price and the price set by the recent Supreme Court ruling.
In total, this would amount to 3.5 million kroons for NG Investeeringud, he said.