EUROPE – Organiser and venue owner Messe Frankfurt is cancelling its cross-border leasing arrangements with a US investor and participating banks, ending a €15m investment run over 12 years.
The move, made by mutual agreement, ends an investor relationship dating back to 2000 in favour of a return to full financial flexibility.
The €15m figure does not count the interest savings made over the 12-year period.
President and CEO of Messe Frankfurt, Wolfgang Marzin, said: “Ending the cross-border leasing agreements will also make it easier for Messe Frankfurt to further develop its exhibition grounds – it will render us completely flexible again.”
Marzin stressed that despite the split, the company’s US business partner had been constructive in its support of Messe Frankfurt’s development in recent years, including those affecting its own interests.
Messe Frankfurt’s chief of finance Klaus Münster-Müller said the cross-border leasing arrangements were the right decision for Messe Frankfurt and its shareholders at the time, adding that the contract did not give rise to any financial burden for the company, the City of Frankfurt or for the federal state of Hesse.
The agreed credit ratings of the US partner were such that there was no need for action to be taken, even throughout the global economic crisis.
“Owing to the current economic situation and interest rate developments and to the credit ratings of the respective parties, now is an opportune time to bring the arrangements to a profitable close,” he said.
Messe Frankfurt recently named its new congress centre in Frankfurt’s Europaviertel district.
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