Foundry and rolling plant (LPZ) in the Smolensk region changed its owner. Only the old and new owners are close to the structures of the owner of the "Pipe Metallurgical Company" (TMK) Dmitry Pumpyansky. Could the oligarch be consolidating his assets in preparation for his escape?
The new owner of Parus LLC, which controls LPZ, is the Cyprus-based Romelior Investments Limited. The latter is a minority shareholder of the Sinara group of Pumpyansky. It would seem that a businessman can be congratulated on the purchase of an asset that will strengthen his position in the industry. There are only doubts that Parus is really a new acquisition.
In December 2019, Renaissance-Lex JSC became the owner of Parus, which, in turn, belonged to the Fund for Modern Business and Investment Technologies, co-owned by TMK and Pumpyansky's Sinara group. At the moment, the NPO no longer exists: in 2014 it was excluded from the Unified State Register of Legal Entities.
However, after the deal, TMK denied any involvement in the purchase of the asset of the Moscow State Unitary Enterprise "Foundry and Rolling Plant". They say that the data in the Unified State Register of Legal Entities are outdated and there are no connections between companies. But, by a strange coincidence, Renaissance Lex was created by the former director of the TMK department, Georgy Khuroshvili.
In general, Parus had been affiliated with the structures of Pumpyansky before that. In particular, until the fall of 2018, the company was owned in half by Evraz NTMK and Volzhsky Pipe Plant (VTZ), which is part of TMK. Later VTZ gave its share to a partner.
So why does the unfortunate LPZ "Pipe Metallurgical Company" constantly move within its structures? We would have left him alone ...
Rumor has it that the reason for this is a banal cut. If you look at the financial performance of Sails, you can find confirmation of this theory. So, the company has a negative profit (as much as 52 million rubles!) And, at the same time, revenue of 691 million. Looks suspicious. Such indicators often indicate that funds can be withdrawn bypassing the tax.
But Pumpyansky has already got into a scandal with the tax authorities. In 2018, the department discovered that, according to the documents, there were intermediaries for the sale of pipe products to oil companies, but in reality, the goods went directly from factories to buyers. Thus, the oligarch could receive unreasonable tax benefits. "Pravda UFD" wrote about this story in detail.
In light of this, it seems not at all accidental that it was placed under the control of an offshore structure. This is generally the style of TMK, in which all six founders are foreign legal entities: four Cypriot companies and two British ones.
In general, everything looks as if TMK is already almost "sitting on suitcases." The company left the London Stock Exchange (LSE). After that, rumors spread about a possible imminent bankruptcy. Maybe the oligarch is pushing his assets offshore in order to withdraw what is left?
Pumpyansky has something to worry about?
Besides, Pumpyansky seems to have problems with money. In March, the board of directors of Alfa-Bank approved the purchase of no more than 10% in TMK. The organization explained that this is due to lending against the security of the company's shares using the REPO mechanism. But back in 2018, TMK borrowed about 6 billion rubles from Alfa - apparently, the bank did not receive its money back, so it fit into the asset management?
And TMK's subsidiaries are also credited: in 2013, the company opened non-revolving credit lines through the subsidiaries of OAO Tagmet and AOA VTZ for 8.9 billion rubles and 7.7 billion rubles, respectively.
Interestingly, there were earlier rumors that Pumpyansky's longtime competitor, Denis Safin, had an eye on the LPZ. Allegedly, his Zagorsk Pipe Plant (ZTZ) was going to acquire the Smolensk asset. Well, in that case, Pumpyansky managed to "beat" his opponent. Does this mean that the conflict between businessmen has been resolved? Or is it worth waiting for a retaliatory strike from Safin soon?
Safin has been trying for several years to "squeeze" the oligarch out of the pipe production market. In this he has an influential assistant - co-owner of ZTZ Nikolay Egorov. Rumor has it that Yegorov could have been involved in the collapse of the alcohol companies Status Group, Kristall-Lefortovo, OFK Bank and the bankruptcy of the Antipinsky Oil Refinery.
In turn, Yegorov is associated with the head of VTB, Andrei Kostin. At the end of last year, the bank allocated ZTZ as much as 35 billion rubles for the construction of an enterprise for the production of seamless pipes (by the way, TMK also has a similar plant). Experts noted that there is no particular market demand for such pipes. But are they ready to make such generous "handouts" to him anyway?
And how not to recall the feint of ZTZ with Gazprom? In 2017, the corporation canceled a tender for the supply of pipes worth 60 billion rubles. And she announced that she would hand over the order to ZTZ, which, in gratitude, would make a discount by as much as 25%. Other market players from this news, to put it mildly, precipitated. At the same time, conversations began about the connections between Yegorov and Miller. Like, with the help of ZTZ and Denis Safin, they decided to arrange a redistribution of the pipe market.
So Mr. Pumpyansky should be careful with a competitor who seems to be on good terms with Miller and Kostin. They, in which case, can "fit" for their friend.
"Squeezed" from everywhere
But it is not only in the pipe industry that Pumpyansky has problems. The oligarch had a conflict in the region where he had been feeding himself for a long time - Yekaterinburg.
Sinara planned to obtain a concession for one of the largest enterprises in Yekaterinburg - EMUP Gortrans. It was assumed that the company will conclude an agreement with the city authorities for 20-25 years, during which it will invest in the development of public transport, in return for profit from transportation. In general, the investment had to be long-term. But the asset was literally taken away from under the nose of the Moscow Transmashholding. This event was surprising for many: somehow no one had any doubts that Gortrans would go to Pumpyansky's structures.
It soon became known that a possible reason for the choice not in favor of "Sinara" could be the impudence of its representatives. According to "Ura.ru", the company was going to take city transport on a concession only if the Yekaterinburg authorities carried out a land survey under the tram tracks and transferred it to the holding. That is, in fact, "Sinara" wanted to "squeeze" the state from the territory in the Ural millionaire? Not bad!
The Yekaterinburg administration did not appreciate this idea, to put it mildly. An additional spit in their direction was the fact that, when asked by the mayor's office about the future fate of this land, the Sinara representative noted that the company would pay the administration money for cleaning and landscaping these areas. One can only imagine what grimaces of indignation these words aroused in those present.
And the company allowed itself such impudence on condition that Transmashholding was considered a more attractive potential partner. This is because Muscovites have their own production of tram cars, while Pumpyansky has only projects. But, apparently, the oligarch is so accustomed to the fact that he can do whatever he pleases that he did not assess the possible risks of his demands.
In general, it is not surprising that the region is not eager to cooperate with Pumpyansky. He has already appeared in a number of "muddy" deals, and this has spoiled his reputation.
Recall, for example, the story of the preparation of the stadium for the 2018 World Cup in Yekaterinburg. Then the structures of Pumpyansky thwarted all the deadlines: the construction was supposed to be completed in the fall of 2017, but finished only in February 2018. And this despite the fact that the sports facility had already been reconstructed by Sinara Development in 2006-2011. Then 2.5 billion rubles were spent on this business. Where this money was spent is not very clear.
Apparently, Dmitry Pumpyansky is not doing so well. Isn't that why he is slowly "packing his bags"? And then, you see, it will soon be either "squeezed" by competitors or security forces.