Greek Bonds – The German situation and activities of DSW

DSW has founded a working group (Arbeitsgemeinschaft Griechenland Anleihen – AGA) to support the claims of German investors holding Greek bonds who were affected by the compulsory bond exchange in 2012 which resulted in an exchange of bonds (1:24) and a loss of 53.5% of the original nominal value. Currently more than 5.000 – predominantly German holders of Greek bonds – have showed interest in AGA and – up to today, more than 2.000 holders of Greek bonds joined AGA.

The objective of AGA:
AGA aims to ensure a powerful representation of Greek bondholders’ interest on all levels: legally, politically and internationally.

Current legal approach:
AGA favours actions against the State of Greece that can be brought to court at the domicile of the bondholder concerned. EU law provides for a respective domicile jurisdiction for consumers (Brussels I) and at least in Germany securities holders such as bondholders can be considered as “consumers”. AGA currently concentrates primarily on actions in favour of German bondholders. Whether the German action model is transferrable to other EU countries and their citizens depends on the respective legal situation and on the number of bondholders concerned. AGA enables bondholders to join collective actions by bundling several claims at courts in order to reduce legal expenses, which is possible whenever identical legal questions have to be ruled by court. Such bundling will ensure a significant reduction of legal costs for bondholders.

Causes of action:
• Breach of international law, European law, bilateral rules, ordre public
• Tort
• Inverse condemnation

First actions of private bondholders who joined AGA will be brought to court in March 2013.

AGA cooperates with the law firm CausaConcilio that has already brought first actions for institutional bondholders to court.

Thomas Hechtfischer, DSW/AGA, Email: