The head of VTB Andrei Kostin recently replaced Georgy Poltavchenko on the board of directors of the United Shipbuilding Company (USC). Recently, Kostin has shown a keen interest in USC affairs and even met with the President of the Russian Federation to discuss her plans.
At the same time, it has long been no secret that the corporation, which was conceived almost as an image project of Vladimir Putin, under the leadership of Alexei Rakhmanov, went into a debt hole and overgrown with scandals, including those related to the operation of ships manufactured at its factories. The Moscow Post has written about this several times.
In order to raise USC “from the bottom,” where it plunged, it will take considerable investments, and how much VTB will pull such a thing is still a question. But Kostin would hardly have taken on such a task if he had no benefit from it – not only image, but also financial – because he is a banker. The Moscow Post correspondent figured out why the head of VTB USC needed.
Assets not counted
USC is a giant corporation, which includes several dozen factories, but, in addition, the company has a huge amount of administrative real estate on its balance sheet that can be sold or used profitably. In St. Petersburg, the company’s office is located in a prestigious business center on 161 Obukhov Defense Avenue. This is private property, judging by the data of the maps, entirely occupied exclusively by USC, so the building apparently belongs to it. 3125.8 sq. m worth 37.7 million rubles. And that’s just one building.
At the same time, we managed to find advertisements for the sale of apartments in this house.
But each plant, the design bureau of USC, also has administrative buildings on its balance sheet. Not to mention the buildings of the factories themselves. The same “Baltic Plant,” where the leadership recently changed – Alexey Kadilov was replaced by Rosatom protege Yuri Gordienkov, is located on an area of 511891 square meters. m on a plot with a cadastral value of almost a billion rubles.
It is possible that Mr. Kostin’s restructuring plan includes reducing the number of existing assets of the corporation by selling some of them and “improving” the remaining money. Will all of them be used for their intended purpose? In this case, the fact that Rakhmanov brought enterprises to the pen is more of a “trump card” for Kostin than a burden.
Hunters to USC
In order to think that it is according to this scenario that the future of the corporation can develop, there are also more weighty reasons. Recently, VTB has been systematically getting rid of assets. Grain enterprises leave Alexander Vinokurov, and a week ago the bank left the capital of one of the largest developers – PIK Corporation.
By the way, developers need areas for construction, and USC areas are as suitable as possible for creating premium LCDs right by the water. Are the legs of the big sale we predict growing from here?
On the lands of enterprises, projects are being developed by the same PIK, Lenstroytrest and other development companies in St. Petersburg and other cities where there are areas still owned by USC. In general, it is easier to see who VTB credits and with whom of the developers is in partnership – most likely Kostin favors them on the issue with USC.
Alexander Vinokurov cannot be written off either – the owner of a mass of grain assets is interested in expanding the port infrastructure and, as our publication previously investigated, with the help of Kostin, the Novorossiysk grain terminal may soon receive.
Other hunters can be found on the assets of the corporation. In 2013, Mikhail Gutseriev showed interest in them – he could acquire the Krasnoye Sormovo plant and the St. Petersburg Proletarian plant. Both assets are still at USC and both are problematic. 0.8 billion rubles were poured into the Proletarian Plant in 2021.
To the exit – in turn
VTB is the first to launch an asset under the hammer in Feodosia – SZ More JSC. From February 9 of this year, the plant goes bankrupt at the request of PK MS LLC, which formally belongs to the Bochagin family, but in fact can act in the interests of the same USC – after all, PK MS is a large supplier under state contracts of the corporation’s enterprises.
According to information from the public cadastral map, the lands of the plant are already recognized as private property. Although the form of permitted use is still a heavy industry. A plot of 315.6 square meters. m. Costs 86.9 million rubles.
In March of this year, it became known about the intention to re-evaluate the assets of the facilities of the Kronstadt Marine Plant, which USC was also going to put under the hammer last year at a cost of about 187 million rubles.
On the territory of ANO “Agency for the Development of the Territory of Kronstadt” (a former subsidiary of USC, liquidated in 2022), which was registered at St. Petersburg, Stremyannaya st. 11, now Kronverk 2 LLC is a company engaged in intermediary services in the purchase and sale of real estate.
And at the addresses of many existing assets of USC – offices whose activities are not related to shipbuilding. For example, at the registration address of the Khabarovsk Shipbuilding Plant – the Pobeda company, which serves cars, the Breeze restaurant, a trading and household shop recently moved from there.
In general, everything indicates that from shipbuilding USC turns into a commercial unprofitable structure. Recently, The Moscow Post conducted the so-called audit of the objects and property of the corporation, which are already for sale. Among them are non-residential buildings, cars and ships.
Kostin will help USC “get off its knees” or cash in on its property and drive it even deeper into a financial “hole” – time will tell.