You might think that anyone connected with Polly Peck International would be keeping a low profile these days. Not so Tahsin Karan, head of Vestel, the Turkish electronics company 87% owned by Polly Peck. He was at the World Economic Forum in the Swiss resort of Davos last month, mingling with the great and the good.
Karan was in bullish mood about the future of his company. "The majority of shares will stay with Polly Peck, of that I am sure," he declared confidently. He confirmed that there were people interested in buying Vestel, but insisted that there were no negotiations.
As for the effects of Polly Peck's troubles on Vestel, Karan claimed that they were purely psychological. The share price of the 18% of Vestel quoted on the Istanbul Stock Exchange is climbing slowly, but is still 40% down on the all-time high. Much of the fall, however, is due to the Gulf crisis, rather than the misfortunes of Vestel's parent.
Of these Karan comments: "Playing with the banks is a two-way street. Polly Peck got credit unsecured but the banks gave it without a term - that was Nadir's biggest mistake."
For Vestel, of course, those unsecured loans are a saving grace, preserving its assets from hungry creditors. Ownership, however, is another matter. And for all Karan's bravado, it is one which will be settled not by Vestel but by Polly Peck's London administrators.