Euronext investigates reasons for the departure of Corio Chairman

Real Estate fund Corio has admitted that the last year announced departure of Chairman Thom Wernink was not of his own accord. The Supervisory Board had instigated to the departure of Wernink as they had lost confidence in him. Euronext Amsterdam is now investigating whether the real estate fund can therefore be seen as guilty of violating the fundregulations.

According to a spokesperson of Euronext Amsterdam this matter has their full attention. ‘We still have to investigate whether this a matter of withholding information which could effect the Exchange. In fact the departure of the Chairman was announced at the right time. That this departure hasn’t been at his own accord, is now the discussion. This matter has our usual attention, like all the other matters at other funds.’

Corio yesterday admitted before the opening of the Stock Exchange, that the Supervisory Board has dismissed Wernink because of a lack of confidence in the Chairman. This was the fund’s reaction to the article in De Telegraaf earlier that week. Until that moment Corio and Wernink insisted in saying that Wernink left on his own initiative. According to Corio this was ‘in the interest of both Wernink and Corio’. The fund didn’t mention why this was in their interest as well as not revealing why they had lost confidence in Wernink.

Statements made the delegated commissioner Jan de Kreij yesterday in De Telegraaf further enlarged the confusion regarding the departure of Wernink. De Kreij stated that the Supervisory Board acted totally in service of the company. According to his opinion they didn’t lie about Wernink’s departure as he himself had mentioned wanting to step down. According to De Telegraaf De Kreij wouldn’t reveal why external arbitration is necessary to set the amount of redundancy pay.

Obscurity also surrounds the departure of Wernink’s co-director Paul Vismans. Corio announced at the end of January 2003, that the departure of Vismans was on his own accord as ‘he had excepted a position elsewhere’. In yesterday’s Telegraaf Vismans said that it certainly was ‘in the line of expectance’ that he would follow up Wernink but has never understood why the Supervisory Board didn’t approach him regarding this matter. According to the paper De Kreij, at that time still member of the Supervisory Board, didn’t think Vismans was capable of heading Corio. Vismans became CEO of KFN in Spring of this year.

A representative of a group of investors in Corio, Profima Trust declared that Profima will do everything in its power to force the Supervisory Board to step down. ‘We already couldn’t believe that the Supervisory Board would dismiss a man like Wernink without coming up with a successor. By these obvious lies the Supervisory Board has qualified itself as being unreliable and uncapable. They should resign immediately.’ J. Bax (former president-director of IHC Caland) chairs the Supervisory Board of Corio since April, following up G. Swalef, committee Chairman of Achmea Group). Also in the Board are W. Borgdorff, N. Kroes, B. Vos and J. de Kreij.


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