It emerged that Moscow International Winery (MMVZ), Kornet (Moscow Sparkling Wine Plant), Narofominsk distillery, Millstream – Black Sea Wines LLC, French Jensenn cognac distillery, Moldavian Calarasi Divin and Bulgarian Vinprom Rousse, Moscow Winery Trade House (retail operation) and 43% of KiN cognac distillery, formerly the assets of Bank of Moscow, belong to the bank ex-president Andrey Borodin. Recently Bank of Moscow, to which the wineries are pledged, has been taken over by state-own VTB.
Bank of Moscow has filed 3 lawsuits against Borodin’s alcohol companies in Moscow’s Arbitration Court: RuR 22.8m ($0.8m) against MMVZ, core production plant, RuR 822.9m ($29.4m) against Millstream – Black Sea Wines agricultural complex and RuR 0.6m ($21,000) against Kornet.
A Bank of Moscow spokesman confirmed the start of litigation to “secure [the bank’s] financial interests”. According to the statement, “non-compliance with the requirements of credit contracts forced Bank of Moscow to take legal action to recover debts and interests”. Deputy director general of Moscow International Winery Yevgenty Kalabin said, “debt restructuring plans are negotiated and the final outline may be agreed on 15 June”.
Borodin alcohol empire is worth RuR 5b ($180m), according to the assessment made in 2008, when management company was set up. Yet, Bank of Moscow claims might be far higher: total sum of credits, received by the wineries from the bank, might exceed RuR 12b ($430m). Half of the sum was secured by shares, the terms and the recipients of the rest remain uncertain. New management of the bank has to sort it out.
The Bank of Moscow spokesman said that the possibility to take over the alcohol companies is very high. The companies might go bankrupt. But before initiating bankruptcy proceedings, the bank has to obtain court ruling about the debts. Thus, the lawsuits may become first step to declare the wineries bankrupt. Vladimir Snegirev, former commercial director of Moscow Winery Trade House, said new management would lead the company to bankruptcy, the Russian Mafia (rumafia.com) reports. Yevgeny Kalabin refuted the information.