Final Word from Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Give or take half a bil, Petr Kellner of PPF appears to be ontrack to lose Kč 2bn in Sazka. Even if most of his investmentinto claims against the lottery company is in the guise of options,which is the market scuttlebutt, he has already handedover real money to Radovan Vítek in the form of a group ofproperties, allowing Vítek to walk away with a big smile anda cool billion in profit. If Kellner is really unlucky, he'll end upwith an empty Sazka and the burden of O2 Arena as the consolationprize. Even more important than Kellner's monetaryloss is what Jaroslav Plesl alluded to yesterday in HN: Sazkais the first major battlefield between members of the FiveFamilies. Until now, they had a hands-off policy if one of theothers was scoping out a claim. With Sazka, though, there's areal risk of bloodshed (figuratively speaking). If, as Plesl suggested,Kellner seeks revenge against Marek Dospiva of Penta,some bodies from the past might start to surface. History hasshown that everybody loses once you go to the mattresses.

Glossary of difficult words

bloodletting - the violent wounding of people during a war or conflict;

bil - billion (crowns, in this case);

guise - an external form, appearance or manner of presentation, typically concealing the true nature of something;

scuttlebutt - rumor, gossip;

a cool--- - used to emphasize a specified quantity or amount, esp. of money;

consolation prize - a prize awarded to a competitor who narrowly fails to win or who finishes last;

to allude to - to suggest or call attention to indirectly; to hint at;

to scope out - to assess; to weigh up;

body - in this sense, information or details that one would prefer to keep confidential;

to go to the mattresses - to go to war with a rival clan or family.


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