The Cypriot company Delance Ltd, through which the family of businessman Sergei Petrov controls the Rolf car dealer, has begun the process of “exploring the possibility of selling 100% of the business,” RBC was informed in the press service of Delance.
“Delance Limited, a shareholder in the largest Russian car dealer, Rolf, announces the start of a process to explore the possibility of selling 100% of the business of the Rolf Group,” the statement said.
According to the SPARK database, Delance owns 100% of Rolf LLC. According to the Unified State Register of Legal Entities and the Cypriot registry, the beneficiary of 98.32% Delance is Alexander Petrov’s son, 1.68% is from Igor Malyarov, the former owner of the Pelican Auto dealer, whom Rolf bought in 2016.
“This is the beginning of the collection of applications,” said Rolf founder of Rolf Sergey Petrov, declining to specify the details of a potential transaction.
A representative of Delance told RBC that the decision to sell Rolf was not connected with the criminal case against Petrov, which was instituted in June 2019. The issue of selling a business has been considered for several years, and the decision is balanced, he added. “There has always been a great deal of interest from potential investors in the company,” says a spokesman for Delance.
Sergey Petrov is the founder of the company, his opinion is extremely important, but he is not a shareholder of Rolf, and its approval is not required, a representative of Delance said.
A closed list of companies, through which Rolf’s purchase offers will be sent, has already been formed, a representative of Delance said. The list includes Russian and foreign investment institutions, as well as potential strategic investors, the representative of Delance added, refusing to clarify their names.
The cost of Rolf can be estimated at five to seven indicators of net profit per year, said Ilya Zharsky, partner of Veta expert group. There is reason to believe that on the future horizon, the company's net profit will amount to 3-5 billion rubles, that is, the entire company can be estimated at 20-30 billion rubles, he added.
RBC sent a request to the press service of the Moscow Credit Bank, the largest lender of Avtospectsentra, about the interest in buying its rival Rolf, as well as to the press service of the Avilon car dealer.
In June 2019, a criminal case was initiated against Petrov and other Rolf managers under Part 3, Art. 193.1 of the Criminal Code (currency transactions to transfer funds in foreign currency or the currency of the Russian Federation to non-residents' accounts using forged documents). According to investigators, in 2014 the leadership of Rolf fictitiously bought Rolf Estate shares at a higher price from Panabel Limited in Cyprus, and thus about 3.94 billion rubles were transferred abroad. SK believes that the real price of shares did not exceed 200 million rubles. Petrov was arrested in absentia and put on the international wanted list.
The founder of Rolf linked the criminal case with his political position and said that his family was offered to sell the business "at half price." Petrov is a citizen of Austria, who, according to him, not only does not extradite his residents, but also does not consider his alleged acts a crime.