Businessman Denis Frolov, probably collecting IT assets for Igor Shuvalov, can actually do nothing but resell already ready-made solutions.
According to the correspondent of The Moscow Post, the shareholders of the National Computer Corporation Leonid Goldenberg and Yevgeny Lachkov, as well as the president of the LLC of the same name Denis Frolov, on behalf of the NCC, filed another lawsuit against the former president of the company, Alexander Kalinin. This time they decided to impose damage on him by 953 million rubles, which he allegedly inflicted by his actions. All this suggests that Frolov does not abandon attempts to gain control of the NCC, despite even the FAS warning.
He can not be afraid to act bypassing the antimonopoly service thanks to the head of VEB Igor Shuvalov. There is an opinion that Frolov is now consolidating IT assets in his interests. True, the entrepreneur himself can really only engage in buying, because the products produced by his company work on already ready-made solutions based on the Linux kernel, which are distributed around the world freely and often free.
Since this spring, a corporate conflict has been unfolding in the NKK: Frolov wants 64% of the company under his control. having bought shares from Goldenberg and Lachkov, but the owner of 33% of the company and its founder Alexander Kalinin is trying to prevent this. Mutual lawsuits, changes in the ownership structure of the company, the appointment of "their" people to key posts by each side of the conflict took place. Earlier, The Moscow Post wrote in detail about this.
But more recently it became known that the shareholders of the National Computer Corporation Leonid Goldenberg and Yevgeny Lachkov refused their requirements for the Aquarius Group of Companies (the most valuable asset of the NKK) and Alexander Kalinin right in the courtroom. This was the reason for the talk that in the battle between Frolov and Kalinin, luck moved to the side of the second.
In addition, antitrust activists forbade Frolov to buy 64% of the shares from Goldenberg and Lachkov, since the entrepreneur owns the processor manufacturer Baikal Electronics, which is a direct competitor to the largest Russian IT manufacturer Aquarius (part of the NCC), and the combination of two assets in the same hands violates the competition law.
But Mr. Frolov does not give up, and recently a new lawsuit flew to Kalinin, this time for 953 million rubles. Apparently, it was prepared for a long time - Goldenberg was already threatening a similar lawsuit in the spring of this year, but in the end it was never filed, due to the lack of evidence. The new lawsuit exactly repeats the old one, only the amount of "damage" increased. Frolov expects that this could be a kind of "control shot" for Kalinin?
Earlier, Frolov and Ko made many attempts to bypass Kalinin, but the lawsuits to the latter did not lead to anything. Then, apparently, there was an attempt to transfer control to Frolov differently - through his appointment as president of the NKK. According to unconfirmed information, Goldenberg and Lachkov assured that at that time Denis Frolov was just unemployed, the vacancy of the president of the NKC turned out successfully, and this had nothing to do with the corporate conflict. That's just according to Rusprofail, at that time Mr. Frolov was the head of 2 current organizations and the founder of 10. Everyone would be so "unemployed"!
It is also interesting how the vacancy turned out to be vacant. It is very similar to the fact that in fact the position was not free, just Alexander Kalinin, who occupied it at that time, was in jail on suspicion of restricting competition, RBC wrote. But shortly before the appointment of Frolov, he left the walls of the pre-trial detention center, which could interfere with the plans of the consolidator.
Genius at someone else's expense
And he can collect assets in the interests of anyone else like Igor Shuvalov from VEB. Under the control of the entrepreneur at the moment are Baikal Electronics, Varton and RusBITeh and the NKK could perfectly supplement this IT empire, which is supposedly interested in the top manager of the state bank. There is an opinion that through Frolov he wants to enter this business, then take him to his hands.
But is Frolov the right person for such actions? According to unconfirmed information, in the eyes of Shuvalov, Frolov is almost represented IT genius. But for the test, everything does not look quite like that.
One of Frolov's most famous assets is RusBITeh, which produces the Astra Linux operating system. The company gained fame after last year it became known that the Ministry of Internal Affairs purchased computers based on it for as much as 1.4 billion rubles. Moreover, from this "astronomical" amount directly on the license took about 180 million rubles - about 6 thousand rubles apiece. For the market, the price is significantly higher than the average.
Many other government agencies are also clients of the company - the Russian Customs Academy, the Ministry of Industry and Trade, the Russian Guard, the structures of the Ministry of Construction, etc. Here is just the use of Astra Linux, neither much nor little, can threaten... state security of Russia!
The fact is that Linux is a freely distributed operating system for developers. It is usually presented in the form of various distributions - archived files ready for installation. From them, as a designer, you can form any system for specific needs. But distributors swing from foreign repositories and the developer can even download installation files with a "bookmark" from the CIA. When downloading, spyware can also be embedded, which will create a leak channel for OS users.
Actually, on the basis of Linux, how easy to guess by the name, and Astra Linux works. And selling such an OS, which has great doubts about cybersecurity, the company earns colossal amounts - the pool of state contracts exceeded 1.5 billion rubles (apparently, the purchase of the Ministry of Internal Affairs in Rusprofail is not displayed). And all this, we recall, only because the company's programmers assembled a "designer" from already finished parts.
In other words, Frolov can simply resell ready-made solutions. What to say, in a certain sense it is really "brilliant," but in this case it is somehow difficult to call him an IT businessman.
The interests of the state bank?
But not "RusBITeh," as they say, united. Frolov could gain control of Baikal Electronics also in the interests of VEB. And the head of the Ministry of Industry and Trade Denis Manturov, friendly with Shuvalov, could help him in this. Before Frolov, among those interested in the asset was called VEB.RF
Frolov himself is directly related to the state bank: from June to October 2020, he served as general director at NM-Tu, the founder of which is VEB. As Kommersant wrote, in July 2020, NM-Teh received control over the enterprise of ex-Minister of Communications Leonid Reiman for 355 million rubles. At the same time, perhaps this was not completely transparent.
Angstrom-T is now in bankruptcy. The event was launched just at the request of VEB for debts of 815 million euros. At the same time, Reiman himself called the bankruptcy of the asset "an erroneous scenario." Initially, it was agreed that this process would not be launched. Now VEB suddenly abruptly changed its position: allegedly the property is redeemed in order to later transfer it to the state.
And, given that while gaining control of Angstrom-T, Frolov worked at NM-Tech, and immediately after he quickly left the company. It is clear why he could be in the position of top manager. Shuvalov used it as "working hands"?
And he could also do this in the case of Baikal Electronics. As The Moscow Post previously wrote, a bankruptcy filing was recently filed for T-Platform JSC, the developer of Baikal processors used to create supercomputers. In parallel Minpromtorg exacts 4.5 billion rubles of state subsidies from the company.
That is, Manturov can help Shuvalov eliminate the "toxic asset." For many, the company is associated with the name of its founder, Vsevolod Opanasenko. As Kommersant wrote, the latter was arrested in March 2019 in a criminal case related to a contract dated November 30, 2016 for the supply of T-platforms to the Ministry of Internal Affairs of computers on domestic Baikal-T1 processors for 357.1 million rubles.
At the same time, detractors consider Manturov himself involved in the criminal history around Baikal Electronics. According to Kommersant, the former head of the enterprise, Vsevolod Opanasenko, and several employees of the Ministry of Internal Affairs are now suspected of fraud with state contracts. And while Opanasenko is under arrest, his company, as it seems from the outside, was trying to bring to bankruptcy.
First, in August last year, the Ministry of Industry and Trade filed a lawsuit with the Moscow Arbitration Court against Baikal Electronics, demanding that the organization recover 500 million rubles for delaying the launch of production of Russian Baikal-M microprocessors. And then VEB itself filed a lawsuit against Opanasenko - the state-owned company demanded as much as 1.5 billion rubles from him. However, he was left unsatisfied.
But Opanasenko has a joint asset with VEB - T-Platform JSC is 25% owned by the state bank. And earlier there was already talk about transferring 100% of the organization to VEB. Last year, the transfer of the enterprise to the already familiar "NM-Tech" allegedly for the financial recovery of the company was discussed.
And Shuvalov's likely desire to engage in the IT sphere is very clear: now this industry is developing in seven-mile steps, and the state is ready to invest billions, or even trillions, in the development of this direction. "Now there is an increase in activity in microelectronics. The country needs its processors and it seems that there will be serious infusions and subsidies. Therefore, everything began to expand. This is quite understandable, "Igor Ashmanov, a well-known Russian information technology entrepreneur and software development specialist, told The Moscow Post earlier.
And Frolov has already assembled an IT giant: Rusbittech Astra LLC, which includes the developer of the domestic operating system Astra Linux, a group of companies for the production of lighting equipment Varton, recently also Baikal Electronics. Do not forget about Angstrom-T, in the acquisition of which he was also directly involved.
But for verification, everything may turn out to be not so rosy for Igor Shuvalov. For example, you might be interested in Astra Linux security. Just at the beginning of the year it became known that to check the security of operating systems based on the Linux kernel, the Federal Service for Technical and Export Control (FSTEC) will create a research center for 300 million rubles.
I wonder what Mr. Shuvalov will do if checking Astra Linux shows that Frolov simply resold unsafe IT solutions?