Euskaltel can’t pay November wages due to ongoing negotiations over team bus transfer
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Monday, December 10, 2012

Euskaltel can’t pay November wages due to ongoing negotiations over team bus transfer

by VeloNation Press at 7:20 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
Fundación Euskadi trying to finalise sale to new team owners BPCT

Euskaltel EuskadiThe employees of Euskaltel-Euskadi haven’t been paid their wages corresponding to November of 2012 because of the lack of agreement in the trade of the team buses between the new society behind the squad, Basque Pro Cycling Team (BPCT), and the old one, Fundación Euskadi.

As the president of Fundación Euskadi, Miguel Madariaga, told Basque radio station Euskadi Irratia and Biciciclismo reported, this has led to “the most difficult situation that we [Fundación Euskadi] have ever faced”.

The root of the problem comes from the huge budget cuts that Fundación Euskadi suffered from the Basque political institutions, which spent 1.3 million euros less on the sponsoring of the squad than what were due to because of the economic crisis that affects Spain.

Under these circumstances, selling the team buses was crucial for Fundación in order to finish their accounts without any debts. Euskaltel was intended to buy it for its new structure, BPCT, and the negotiations have been ongoing for months, but no agreement has been reached.

Basque newspaper El Correo even reported the possibility of Euskaltel buying the team buses of Manolo Sáiz, who still owns most of the old Liberty Seguros / ONCE infrastructure.

Madariaga gave further details of the situation to Euskadi Irratia, providing specifics. The wages for November and December amount to €857.000, while the team buses are valued at €918.000. Closing the trade would be enough for the salaries of the employees of Fundación to be paid. Some meetings about this are due to be held either today or tomorrow.

“BPCT and Fundación Euskadi have to reach an agreement regarding this trade, as there isn’t another way to solve this problem”, Madariaga said. “I hope Euskaltel [referring to the company which sponsors and runs BPCT] will realise that”.

If both parties don’t reach an understanding and Fundación’s buses aren’t sold to BPCT or another cycling team, salaries will remain unpaid. Then, if any employee complains to the UCI, the bank guarantee that Fundación had to deposit in order to be registered this season will be executed, which would damage Euskaltel’s image and could potentially affect the application for the yearned-for UCI WorldTour license.

- Story contributed by Fran Reyes (Twitter: @FranReyesF)



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