Insight between Gutseriev and Khotimsky | Latest news The Moscow Post
09 December 2023

Insight between Gutseriev and Khotimsky

Behind the deal to buy John Deer Financial may be the interests of Mikhail Gutseriev, who does not get out of debts, and the scandalous bankers Khotimsky.

The Russian investment group Insight acquired John Deer Financial, a Russian leasing subsidiary of the American agricultural machinery manufacturer John Deere.

Behind the deal, as well as behind the Insight group itself, the main owner of which is entrepreneur Avet Mirakyan, oligarchic interests may stand. Mirkaryan himself is closely connected with Mikhail Gutseriev's Safmar Group of Companies, and his new partner Alexei Komar previously worked for Sovcombank's controversial brothers Dmitry and Sergei Khotimsky.

Details - in the material of the correspondent of The Moscow Post.

John Deer Financial is a serious asset in the market, the company's leasing portfolio is almost 32 billion rubles. At the same time, earlier, in 2022, Insight acquired another large asset - a subsidiary of Siemens - Siemens Finance, which smoothly turned into Deltalizing.

All this was accompanied by two issues of Insight bonds - for the amount of 53 and 11 billion rubles. I.e. the group clearly has money. At the same time, the main legal entity - LLC Investment Group Insight resembles a fictitious one-day office.

The office has only 12.5 thousand rubles of the authorized capital, the only employee on staff and empty financial indicators. The office itself has the status of a micro-enterprise - and this is a group that turns billions in assets.


Apparently the only employee is the general director of the group Avet Mirakyan, who is also the owner of 80% of the group's shares. Another 20% used to belong to his partner Andrei Rassamakin. In August 2022, Rassamakin sold his share to a whole set of new owners, each of whom received 4% - these are Artem Astanin, Alexey Komar, David Poghosyan, Anton Barsht and the current managing director of the group Mikhail Gonopolsky.


Mirakyan himself can represent the interests of the oligarchic Gutseriev family. From 2016 to 2021, i.e. already during the ownership of Insight, Avet Mirakyan was the general director of the Safmar group, the main legal entity of the Gutseriev empire. It directly belongs to Mikhail Safarbekovich on the 100%.


Mirakyan was also the general director of Safmar - Financial Investments, which from 2021 began to bear the name SFI (PJSC Esefai). This asset should also be associated with the Gutseriev. Moreover, Mirakyan was the general director of SFI from 2017 to 2022, and by the end of 2021 the company received a net loss of 4 billion rubles - 1.7 billion less than a year earlier.

Where the profit went is a separate question. Until September 2021, the owner of SFI was the Cypriot offshore company Steplio Enterprises Limited, which may well be one of the Gutseriev family. Given the fact that their business is already completely borrowed, the money could simply be withdrawn from the custody of the Russian state.


Gutseriev's man

It is difficult for Gutseriev and his inner circle to act with their own hands. They are under cross-sanctions from Western countries, as are many of their assets. Therefore, in the case of the purchase of John Deer Financial by Insight, it would be much more profitable through its former top manager Mirakyan.

At the same time, Gutseriev is taking steps to get his business out of the blow. Back in the summer of 2021, when the oligarch was already under sanctions, he left the post of head of the board of directors of Russneft, his key oil asset.

Shortly before that, in the spring of the same year, that Mirakian-led Safmar Financial Investments transferred almost its entire stake in Russneft to a subsidiary - another Cypriot offshore offshore company Weridge Investments Limited, which is 100% a subsidiary of Safmar itself. Vedomosti wrote about this.

Thus, trying to hide from the eyes of the sanctions, Mr. Gutseriev could quietly transfer his assets abroad. And it seemed to be done by the hands of Avet Mirakyan.

At the same time, Russneft, like other companies associated with Gutseriev, continue to calmly receive government contracts. The latter had them in the amount of almost 14 billion rubles. Where does this money go?

If part of the taxes from Russneft settles in Cyprus, then it is worth asking Mikhail Gutseriev a question - maybe they should have been sent to pay for the huge debts of the Safmar group? Two years ago, their total volume was about $15 billion at the old exchange rate, or about 1 trillion rubles.

A significant part of these funds is loans from state banks issued for the development of the Gutseriev's business. And the head of the business empire himself literally curls in a frying pan so as not to pay them on time.

Avet Mirakyan is a man of the Gutseriev family? Photo:

With great difficulty, he managed to agree on a restructuring of 170 billion rubles with Sberbank, which the Afip refinery owned by Gutseriev owed. Back in 2019, he agreed to restructure 135 billion rubles with Otkritie and Trust.

These structures, we recall, were given the rights to claim the debts of the collapsed Binbank, which Gutseriev led in tandem with his nephew Mikail Shishkhanov. Recall that the bank fell for reorganization in the Central Bank, while a financial hole of as much as 600 billion rubles was discovered in it. Writes about this

It is surprising how Mikhail Gutseriev and his nephew Mikail Shishkhanov were not prosecuted. The latter then assured that he did not take a penny from the money, and that he would no longer be engaged in banking business at all.

Piece of pie for Khotimsky

Now "John Deer Financial" could also be in the circuit of the Gutseriev. But they are not the only big players who could be behind the deal. One of the new co-owners of Insight, Alexei Komar, may represent the interests of Sovcombank owners Dmitry and Sergei Khotimsky.

Since 2020, he has been and remains the general director of UPT LLC, which is engaged in software development. Now the company is 75% owned by the Armenian offshore company Idram LLC, another 25% is owned by Felix Khachatryan. But until June 2022, 12.5% of the company belonged to Sovcombank, and the shares of the Idram offshore were pledged - apparently from the same bank.


At the same time, UPT LLC also looks like a fictitious office. It was formed only on April 6, 2020. On the same day, Alexey Komar became its general director. At the end of 2021, the company did not receive a penny of revenue, but increased its loss of 32 million rubles. Could the money end up in Armenia?

Earlier, Komar acted as the founder and headed another organization - ROSTR LLC, which is not clear what he did in the field of architecture. It is not clear because the company with zero employees was liquidated with missing revenue and profit.

I.e. Alexey Komar has no particular success in managing and owning a business. Nevertheless, he found money and bought a stake in Insite - and, quite possibly, could have been delegated there by the Khotimsky to represent his interests.

This would not be surprising, because Sovcombank, like the Khotimsky themselves, is one of the most "sanctioned" in the country. Due to sanctions, the bank lost huge assets, the ability to attract funds from foreign partners and buried plans for an international IPO.

Recently, Sergei Khotimsky in an interview with Vedomosti told how deftly and calmly the bank survived this wave, that this situation should be recorded in textbooks on banking. Survived because a significant part of the assets may be concentrated in unclean, but already other hands?

At the same time, The Moscow Post previously described in detail that at the end of 2022 the situation in Sovcombank is far from ideal - liquidity suffers, the bank does not have where profit goes.

Sergei Khotimsky assured the general public that the bank is doing an excellent job of dealing with sanctions. Photo: Vladislav Shatilo/RBC

All this is superimposed on a whole series of scandals with Sovcombank borrowers - ordinary people who took out a consumer loan or mortgage. In the context of a reduction in the feed base, the bank can go to the most unseemly methods - imposing services and knocking out debts.

According to the authors of the Boutique FSB Telegram channel, allegedly in the situation with Sovcombank loans even reached the voluntary departure of the borrower from life, and ABK Invest Bank can help Khotimsky in implementing such undertakings. As if pensioners and even single mothers who have fallen into bondage are beaten, the doors are kicked out of them, the locks are broken. Another wildness is to pour tar over the door to the debtor's apartment.

Back in the spring, The Moscow Post wrote about the story of a woman - Elena, who signed an agreement with Sovcombank for 3 million rubles secured by a two-room apartment. According to her, after she was forced to write out her daughter from the apartment, and then her living space was estimated as an odnushka in a ridiculous amount of 9.5 million rubles for Moscow. As a result, she was forced to beat all the bells so as not to lose the only living space.

Other new owners of the investment group also look like denominations. The owner of another 4%, Artem Astanin, in the past was the general director and founder of Rom-Art LLC, a now liquidated company, which is just like a dummy with 10 thousand authorized capital and no financial activity. Astana was no longer engaged in business, but now he suddenly became a big investor.

The owner of another 4%, David Poghosyan, is a newcomer at all - judging by Rusprofile, Insight is the first asset to which he is related as an owner. The same can be said about Anton Barshta, and about Mikhail Honopolsky.

It looks like a classic scheme, when eggs are not placed in one basket, but they prefer to act through proxies - at least there is someone to make extreme in case of problems. And the problems are full of what the Gutserievs have, what the Khotimsky have.

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