Businessman Elan Schwartzenberg confirmed in a press conference on Monday that he bought a 90 percent stock in Realitatea Media. However, he said the value of the transaction is confidential, only mentioning: “I can assure you that Sorin Ovidiu Vantu recovered his investment.”
The businessman announced he is ready to tap into financial resources of EUR 100 million in order to keep the Realitatea business flowing and develop it.
“You can say that negotiations started ten years ago, because both Mr. Vantu and I are businessmen and always think about buying or selling something. But the actual offer was put on the table several weeks ago. The signing of the contract took place on Friday afternoon,” said Schwartzenberg.
He also added that he had started to carry out a due diligence action regarding Realitatea Media a month and a half ago.
The transaction was de facto completed between Schwartzenberg and Sorin Ovidiu Vantu’s children, Ioana and Ionut Vantu.
“My brother and I, we have sold all the shares we had in Realitatea Media. The new shareholder is Elan Schwartzenberg. From this moment on, my father, Sorin Ovidiu Vantu, is no longer associated in any way with this business. My father created a solid brand that only brought him trouble,” said Ioana Vantu, during the press conference.
Vantu was arrested last Friday (April 29). He was charged with blackmailing Sebastian Ghita (who is in charge of the management of the Realitatea Media group), and will be held for 29 days, following a decision of the Bucharest Court.
Upon being arrested, Vantu told the media that he had “a surprise in store” for Mr. Basescu, which he will reveal on Monday (April 2).
When asked about this issue, Schwartzenberg said: “I did not see Mr. Vantu since Wednesday evening when we perfected the deal.”
“I believe Mr. Sorin Ovidiu Vantu throught it is high time he starts to enjoy life. I think this TV channel caused him too many problems,” said Schwartzenberg, when asked about Vantu’s reasons to sell Realitatea TV.
Schwartzenberg said he would respect the terms of the management contract between Realitatea TV and Sebastian Ghita. “Any contract, from my point of view, was made in good faith and I respect Mr. Ghita, the contract which is in force and the money he invested in this business. I will respect the terms of the contract ad literam and I expect Mr. Ghita to do the same,” he said, also adding that he never met Sebastian Ghita in person.
The businessman said he is not too much involved in his businesses. “Generally, other people administer my businesses, I am not involved in micro-management. Personally, I do not know much about mass-media. I admire and respect those who get involved in mass-media, who have the courage to invest money, and I am referring here to Sebastian Ghita, who has a valid management contract. I have only words of praise for his courage and initiative,” said Schwartzenberg.
“This TV stations cost some their health, others their freedom, and others blood. I want this business to have a positive continuity. I do not have dealings with the state, and I do not wish to use this TV channel for business, I do not wish to crucify or to praise people,” he said, adding that he wants Realitatea TV to become ‘a local CNN.’
Schwartzenberg also said he does not “get attached to his businesses” and does not rule out the possibility of selling Realitatea Media at some point, “if a stronger media group shows up on the market.”