Sawiris Victorious over Benedetti in the UK Court of AppealBy Kirkland Ellis International Llp, PRNE
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
LONDON, December 16, 2010 - The following is being issued by Kirkland & Ellis International LLP:
The English Court of Appeal has today handed down its final judgment on
the appeals filed by Mr. Alessandro Benedetti and Mr. Naguib Sawiris
(Chairman of Orascom Telecom and Weather Investments) in respect of a
decision of the English High Court in June of 2009.
The English Court of Appeal issued its ruling entirely rejecting Mr.
Benedetti's appeal for any equity stake in Weather Investments. The Court of
Appeal upheld Mr. Sawiris' position that Mr. Benedetti has no legal right to
any shares in Weather Investments or any of its related companies and the
Sawiris family companies were exonerated from all liability to Mr. Benedetti.
Mr. Sawiris and his family's companies succeeded in their appeal, with
the court reducing substantially the original award of euro 75.1 million down
to euro 14.52 million, for the services Mr. Benedetti provided in the course
of the acquisition of Wind Telecommunicazioni SpA in 2005. Mr. Benedetti has
also been ordered to pay the legal fees of Mr. Sawiris and his family
companies in the original case, which exceeded euro 10 million. This outcome
stands in stark contrast to Mr. Benedetti's initial claim of being entitled
to one third of the shares of Weather Investments and the court's initial
judgment to award him euro 75 million.
Prior to the initial litigation, Mr. Benedetti had rejected an amicable
offer by Mr. Sawiris as compensation for his role in the acquisition of Wind
Telecommunicazioni, choosing instead to commence court proceedings claiming
much more. This is a resounding victory for Mr. Sawiris and his family's
companies following a lengthy litigation process that was first commenced by
Mr. Benedetti in August 2007. Mr. Sawiris was quoted as saying "my family and
I are very happy that justice was served and that we can now put this issue
Manal Abdel-Hamid, PR & Corporate Communications Director, Weather Investments, Tel: +202-24615-141, Mobile: +2012-2156333, mabdelhamid at otelecom.com
Tags: December 16, Kirkland & Ellis International Llp, London, Western Europe