The Catalan investment group which is negotiating the purchase of the Majórica pearl factory said that it would stay in Manacor. However, spokesman Josep Sardá declined to enter into details of the financial side of the deal which is due to be concluded this week. Nor could he give any guarantees to the workers. But Sardá did say that the last viability plan presented by the old management had been ruled out because the circumstances are no longer the same, and a new industrial plan will be drawn up. The buyers are an investment group headed by Rafael Español, chairman of La Seda. A spokesman for the workers, many of whose jobs had been threatened under the old viability plan, said it seemed a good option and had given them a little hope. But they are still cautious about how the deal will work out. Balearic labour minister Eberhard Grosske also expressed caution and said it was better to wait and see what the intentions of the new owners were. He added that the government's doors would be open to any investor who keeps production in Manacor and does not axe jobs. Mayor of Manacor Miquel Riera expressed his satisfaction at the news, and said it provided hope for the Majórica workers and the whole of Manacor.