A subsidiary of Miratorg agricultural holding, Bryansk broiler, appealed to the Arbitration Court of the Volgograd region to recognize the bankrupcy of Fregat-Yug poultry plant, which is part of the Bely Fregat group. According to Miratorga, the plant hasn't paid for the delivery of animal feed for more than one year, and its debt given the penalty is 242 million rubles.
"Fregat-Yug made its last payment in December 2015, then completely stopped the implementation of its obligations under the contract," reads the announcement on the Miratorg's website.
According to the documents of the Arbitration Court of the Volgograd Region, the court accepted the bankruptcy petition, but the meeting date has not been set. This is due to the fact that before the court received a similar statement by another company, OOO Torg-Invest, and the law foresees that that suit shall be considered first. In this case the documents necessary to start the process haven't been yet provided by Torg-Invest, according to court records. A source close to Miratorg believes that Torg-Invest is affiliated with Bely Fregat and is trying to delay the process.
Bely Fregat group unites the companies producting poultry meat, grain, sugar beet and feed, it is a major agricultural producer in that part of Russia. Its website has no relevant information about its financial and economic activity. The total potential capacity of the two poultry plants of Bely Fregat reaches 40 thousand tons of meat a year, estimates the president of consulting company Agrifood Strategies, Albert Davleev.
Miratorg is not the only dissatisfied lender. By its own estimates, as of the summer of 2016, the total debts of the Bely Fregat's enterprises exceeded 1 billion rubles.
According to the files of court cases, at the beginning of December 2016 the seed producer Strube Rus filed a suit in the Moscow Arbitration Court to the three subsidiaries of Bely Fregat (Orelagroinvest, Orlov Chernozems and Orlovsky leader) on debt collection amounting to more than €1.83 million. The representative of Strube confirmed to RBC the fact of filing a lawsuit, claiming that the debts for deliveries occurred over two years ago.
In September 2016, Kommersant wrote that Bely Fregat owed to Megamix and the subsidiary of the US Cargill group. However, in the first case Bely Fregat managed to negotiate before the trial, as told RBC the co-owner of GC Megamix Sergey Vlasov.
Bely Fregat holding already once escaped bankruptcy after defaulting on the bonds in 2009, recalls Albert Davleev. He did not rule out that this time the company, too, will be able to negotiate with its debtors to pay the debt. At the same time, he noted that in the current situation, the holding company will find it difficult to get new loans necessary for business development.
Chief Financial Officer of Bely Fregat, Elena Petrukhina, refused to comment on the situation and advised to contact the press service of the group. The press service representative was unavailable for comment.
Earlier, a representative of Bely Fregat told the regional agency Abireg, that Miratorg's claims may be associated with an interest in land or productive assets of the company. A similar version is not ruled out by one of the interlocutors of RBC. For example, according to him, the assets of Bely Fregat located in the Bryansk region, would be a good acquisition for Miratorg, which is a monopolist in the region.