The SEKAP tobacco company is on the verge of declaring bankruptcy, with a company board meeting planned for tomorrow to discuss the related procedure with bankruptcy law experts.

The company is the biggest in Xanthi, and employs about 200 workers.

SEKAP was founded in 1975 in the Western Thrace city of Xanthi, where it is still headquartered, and it was acquired in 2013 by Pontian Greek-Russian businessman Ivan Savvidis, who has pursued multiple investments in northern Greece, including the PAOK F.C. and, most recently, a substantial stake in the Port of Thessaloniki (OLTH).

In an announcement, SEKAP stated that due to the recent ruling of an appellate court in Komotini, which upheld an older 38 million euro fine for customs violations, the company’s operation has been impeded.

“In the context of the essential impeding of the company’s operation, due to the Komotini Appellate Court’s rejection of the appeal of the 38 million euro fine due to violations that took place in 2009, as well as the recent decision of Xanthi customs authorities, which rendered unfeasible the sale of products in the domestic market, SEKAP announces the calling of an extraordinary board meeting,” the announcement read.

The company said the meeting will be attended by experts from top bankruptcy firms.

The board members will review the recent developments and begin preparations for bankruptcy proceedings.

It should be noted that a few months ago, the government passed a bill that offered investors an exemption from contraband fines under certain conditions. Opposition parties at the time charged that the law was tailor-made for SEKAP’s owner.