The founder of B&S, Willem Blijdorp, who is bringing his group to the stock exchange on Friday to become a billionaire, has been charged with fraud. If the allegations (including that he ordered 'a prostitute' to steal information) are proven, the Quote 500 member risks a maximum prison sentence of 4 years. Blijdorp speaks in a response of 'a fake charge'.
In 2014, Blijdorp became half owner of the Moerdijk-based Metco Toileteries & Cosmetics, through a Luxembourg-based company, which, among other things, supplied large quantities of shampoo and deodorant to various price-fighting retailers. The other half of the shares was owned by Martin Nateghi, son of the Metco founder. They burped nicely together; turnover rose to €30 million, of which more than €1 million remained at the bottom of the line. However, the company went bankrupt in August last year. According to Nateghi, this was the final piece of a preconceived plan by Blijdorp, which had bought up the stock for a pittance before the bankruptcy.
Blijdorp was able to do this because Deutsche Bank had canceled the credit line with Metco. What played a role in this was that Blijdorp had a subordinated loan from Metco, provided by a company affiliated with it, repaid without the bank's permission. But another important reason for terminating the banking relationship was the substantial debt Nateghi had with Metco. This partly concerned money that he had needed to take over his father's shares, but it is also certain that the hard-working entrepreneur lived quite generously. He partly financed that luxurious lifestyle through the company's credit card. According to Nateghi, Blijdorp knew about it. In fact, he would have encouraged him to smoke that credit card lustily,
According to Nateghi, 'ladies of pleasure' were also involved. For example, in April 2015, Blijdorp arranges for his partner to be joined by a lady companion from Dubai, who would go through life as 'Madame Marina'. What Nateghi did not know was that Blijdorp had instructed her to steal documents from his hotel room, a room where he was not himself at the time. In an email from Blijdorp to her we read, among other things: 'pls pick private documents bookkeeping which are in his cupboard next to his desk see other documents you think are usefull' .
Blijdorp has a completely different version of the facts, he told Quote in a written response . The so-called 'companion lady' is in reality Blijdorp's office manager in Dubai, 'introduced by Nateghi, of whom she was a good friend'. The lady did not steal any paperwork, but only moved at the request of her boss after Nateghi had to give up his hotel apartment due to lack of money. Nateghi laughs off the explanation: 'That lady did indeed go to work for Willem, but he also paid her for sex. And one simple question: where is that deleted documentation now? I never got it back.”
According to a spokesperson for Blijdorp, the two have no business secrets from each other. 'After all, they were good business partners and Willem had access to all of the company's information.' Mails submitted by Nateghi in his indictment confirm that image. We read Blijdorp write: 'I have a good life and I want to offer that to you as a partner in the business. (…) I will make you rich as I have made myself rich.' In turn, Nateghi is very grateful for this relationship. "I'm so damn grateful to you."
But behind his back, Blijdorp played a completely different game, says Nateghi. He points, for example, to the friendly contacts that Blijdorp maintains with Deutsche Bank. For example, in an email he calls Kees Hoving, CEO of the Dutch branch, a 'good friend'. And, says Nateghi, the fact that DB withdrew the credit at some point can be seen as a favor to friends. Through the bank, which had a right of pledge on the stocks, Blijdorp was able to buy up that stock via a Monegasque company. Initially, he seemed to succeed for €2.1 million, after a procedure Nateghi managed to increase that amount to €3.55 million. Still far too little, in his view. Blijdorp says about the sale that it took place with the consent of the court,
After Blijdorp secured the stock, Metco ran out of stuff to trade. So no more money came in. And so there was no money left to pay bills. An outstanding claim against one of the Blijdorp companies could also not be settled. He then filed for bankruptcy of Metco on April 11, 2017. This was initially rejected by the Zeeland-West-Brabant District Court, but on August 31, Metco was declared bankrupt by the Court in Den Bosch. 'With this, Blijdorp had (again) a competitor, a healthy company with a turnover of millions 'demolished', as we read in the 138-page report, including productions, for fraud that was sent to the judiciary in mid-March, and which is in the possession of Quote .† According to Blijdorp, the bankruptcy was inevitable: 'The business turned out to be heavily loss-making.' A statement that Nateghi dismissed as 'a complete lie'.
Earlier that year, Nateghi and the companies involved in Blijdorp had already faced each other in court. Initially, Nateghi gets what he demands, but not on appeal. What certainly didn't help was that he hadn't shown up. According to the lawyer who filed the declaration for him, he no longer had money to pay the legal costs. Those procedures were remarkable, because before that time, Blijdorp had repeatedly suggested that they wanted to come to a mutual agreement. For example, on October 21, 2016, he writes in a long email to Nateghi that he does not have to feel alone. “Your buddy is on standby. He won't let you down either. (…) Sometimes in life you have to learn something from people and have more experience in certain things. (…) mister nathegie [sic] I will not let you fall and I will not screw you up either. I have started something and I want to make it a success. You have also experienced [sic] that I do wish you luck.'
Nateghi can only sneer at that now. “I was screwed hard, he took my case from me. And I know that there are more people who are in the same boat as me, but who are afraid of him. I hope that my report will convince them to come forward with their stories about this man.'
When asked, Blijdorp speaks of 'a fake indictment' that he cannot see separately from the increased attention surrounding his person, now that he is putting his duty-free empire B&S on the stock exchange next Friday. He deeply regrets now being accused of things that are totally untrue. He cannot avoid the impression that someone is trying to extort private money in this way during a period that is important to him," said a spokesperson. The situation is all the more dire as Blijdorp speaks of a 'decade long' relationship with Nateghi, whose children he provided with tuition. Nathegi, who points out that Blijdorp dismissed a previously reached settlement, acknowledges that this was part of their business agreement. “But then he slaughtered me.