May 19th, 2011
04:38 AM GMT
(CNN) – A unit of insurer Munich Re awarded high-performing agents with a 2007 party in Budapest with 20 prostitutes, according to a story published Wednesday by Handelsblatt, a leading German business newspaper.
According to a story preview published on the Handelsblatt website, about 100 guests gathered at the Gellert spa “and transformed the historic site into an open-air brothel.”
Handelsblatt reported that women wore armbands: red for hostesses, yellow for sexual favors and white for prostitutes reserved for top executives and agents. Guests coming into the party were searched before entry and forbidden from taking cameras inside, according to one guest Handelsblatt interviewed.
The newspaper said the prostitutes would get a stamp on their forearm to keep a tally of services through the night.
The company confirmed to CNN's Diana Magnay the incident occurred. Alexander Becker, a spokesman for the Munich Re subsidiary Ergo Versicherungsgruppe said that in June 2007 "there was an incentive trip of one of our sales organizations to Budapest and it is true that several prostitutes attended one of the evenings of this multi-day event."
He could not comment on media reports that prostitutes wore colour-coded armbands depending on the seniority of those who wanted to have sex with them, nor that their arms were stamped by each person who did have sex with them.
Nor could he comment on Handelsblatt's reporting that sexual acts took place in public display and that four poster beds covered with drapes were arranged around the natural springs where the party took place. "I don't know what happened in detail," Becker told CNN.
"The persons responsible are no longer with us," Becker said. There were two people responsible for Hamburger Mannheimer (HMi – the sales organisation in question) who "must have known about the party," Becker said, the last of whom left the company in 2009. "The Ergo board only came to know about the it when those responsible had left the company."
Becker said media reports that there were 100 sales agents at the party were "probably a bit on the high end." Becker wasn't sure whether there were any female sales agents attending but that he thought it was "more or less mostly men."
The sex party “is not in line with company policy," Becker said, "and we made it pretty clear and the new management which came in in 2007 made it clear that such events should not happen again."
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