Lena Group sues Caixa for €258M

 In Banks, Construction, Law, News

Two construction companies, Always Special and Lena, owned by Grupo Nov, are suing Caixa Geral de Depósitos (CGD) for €258 million.

The common lawsuit was filed on Monday, at a Lisbon court with four complainants: Always Special, Lena SGPS, Lena Engenharia e Construção SGPS SA and Lena Engenharia e Construção SA.
The companies are suing the public bank for €258, 249,760.87 – almost €260 million.
The online news agency ECO contacted Always Special and the Lena companies (now owned by the Nov group) as to why they had filed this suit, but the companies declined to comment. “As this is of a legal matter, the administration of the companies involved will not be making any public statement for the time being,” states a communiqué from the Grupo Novo marketing.
CGD has stated that it has yet to be informed about the case and will study the suit when it received the legal petition.
The Barroca Rodrigues family, which have had a long involvement with the companies, appeared on the list of the bank’s major debtors two years ago, with debts in the region of €90 million owed, according to an audit by EY.
In 2015, Always Special owed €44 million to CGD which was “a total write-off” while Lena Construções owed €48 million (with the bank recording impairments of €18 million).
More recently, ECO reported the merger of Lena SGPS and Lena Engenharia Construção with Always Special, in an operation that took place at the end of 2020.
According to the documents linked to this merger, in September 2020 Always Special owed €57 million to the bank.
Lena Engenharia Construção had bank debts worth €44.3 million.
The merger was carried out with the intention of simplifying the group’s structures and cutting costs. Lena was wound up, but the responsibilities for its debts were transferred to Always Special.