German-Ukrainian synthesis of Knecht and Sobolevsky
The strategically important plant JSC “Volzhsky orgsintez” probably fell under the control of a German citizen Tortsten Knecht, a “screen” for which a native of Ukraine, a citizen of Cyprus Alexander Sobolevsky could act.
A completely wild situation has developed at a strategic enterprise in Russia, which previously produced 90% of all aniline in the country, used in the production of medicines, herbicides, and, most importantly, explosives.
As the correspondent of The Moscow Post in the Volgograd region managed to find out, the real beneficiary of the JSC Volzhsky Orgsintez plant may be a German citizen, pharmaceutical businessman Tortsten Knecht.
Although, according to documents in various databases, the founder is a certain native of Ukraine with offshore citizenship Alexander Sobolevsky.
Against the backdrop of recent information about the possible liquidation of aniline production at the enterprise by some top managers, the Prosecutor General’s Office of Russia is trying through the courts to return Volzhsky Orgsintez JSC to the balance of the state.
Some kind of unhealthy craze – either a fishing company from Vladivostok will be under the control of an investor from the United States, then the port of Perm will be under the control of a British, and then a whole chemical plant has sailed to a citizen of Cyprus. Judging by open data, the plant is one of the few that has the production capacity for the production of aniline, the base for the production of explosives. The latter is especially important in the light of the NWO and the needs of the military-industrial complex.
Background: Soviet synthesis – in private hands
Established in 1964 for the production of methionine, the Volzhsky Methionine Plant was later renamed the “Plant of Organic Synthesis” and expanded its product line. In the 90s, a joint-stock company was established on the basis of the plant by the decision of the Committee for State Property Management of the Volgograd Region.
According to the company’s website, the range of manufactured products includes aniline, methionine, flotation reagents, carbon disulfide, gasoline additives. The company’s products are used in the pharmaceutical, chemical, pulp and paper, glass industries, in the production of synthetic detergents, synthetic rubbers and latexes, pesticides for agriculture, for use in the diet of farm animals and birds, as raw materials in textile, leather and other sectors of the economy.
As for aniline, according to the authors of the New Chemical Technologies website, allegedly in the early 2000s, Volzhsky Orgsintez in Russia was the largest producer of this product used in the military-industrial and pharmaceutical complex.
As RBC reported in September 2022, after the Ministry of Energy of the Russian Federation in July 2016 introduced a ban on the use of monomethylaniline in Russia (due to the negative impact of the additive on vehicle components and the environment), Volzhsky Orgsintez was forced to mothball this workshop. Ultimately, the leading positions in Russia on the aniline market were occupied by imported products. After the European Union imposed sanctions on the supply of aniline and hexamethylenediamine to Russia in 2022, experts expected that the plant from Volzhsky would launch workshops and fill the market with domestic products. But, alas, according to RBC, the management not only did not resume production, but, on the contrary, agreed on plans to eliminate the production of aniline.
Only taking into account who are the controlling persons of the enterprise today and who is behind them, such a decision is not surprising.
Are the beneficiaries of the chemical plant foreigners?
According to the Unified State Register of Legal Entities, the sole shareholder today is Alexander Sobolevsky, who has the only citizenship – the Republic of Cyprus. According to open data, Sobolevsky, the former director of Volzhsky Orgsintez, is a native of Ukraine.
In 2006, the RBC publication reported that a criminal case had been opened against the former general director Sobolevsky for abuse of office. The investigation considered that by his actions he caused damage to Volzhsky Orgsintez for more than 8 million rubles. In addition, the prosecutor’s office in the same period opened a case on non-payment of taxes by the leadership – about 36 million rubles. Sobolevsky himself was then put on the wanted list. The criminal case dragged on for a long time. There is no official information about how the claims against Sobolevsky ended, but the case was probably dismissed, since, for example, in 2022 Sobolevsky was mentioned in Komsomolskaya Pravda as a fundraiser for Donbass.
According to information from the RBC publication, the shares of the plant were distributed as follows: 25% from ADDISEO France SAS (France), about 20% from Welding GMGH & Co (Germany), 15% from the Russian-German JSC “Pharminvestprom”, the rest are divided between individuals and the company’s team.
As REGNUM reported, against the backdrop of a criminal case in those years, the Renova company of oligarch Viktor Vekselberg allegedly offered to sell the shares to the management of the chemical plant, and then there were proposals to sell them to the German co-owners of Orgsintez – Welding GmBH & Co.
And what is interesting, according to the Federal Tax Service of Russia, a related party of Volzhsky Orgsintez is Torsten Knecht, who at the end of 2022 was a member of the Board of Directors of Volzhsky Orgsintez JSC and the beneficiary of the very German company Welding GmBH & Co, operating in the pharmaceutical industry. According to the company’s reports, at least in 2014 a large consignment of methionine worth more than 412 million rubles was supplied to the German company.
Sobolevsky has been a beneficial shareholder since at least 2017. Such conclusions can be drawn from the statements, which indicate that in 2019 the beneficial owner Sobolevsky was paid debts on dividends of previous years – more than 1.2 billion rubles. And in total, according to the results of 2017 and previous years, the amount of dividends was agreed in the amount of 7.7 billion rubles.
At the same time, in 2017, judging by the information disclosure site, the shareholders of the plant were allegedly exclusively offshore companies – Cypriot STAWELLSON MANAGEMENT LIMITED, CORRIENSON MANAGEMENT LIMITED, Kinseywood Consultants Limited, TEXTONFIELD CONSULTANTS LIMITED, Millsaport Enterprises Limited and registered in St. Vincent and the Grenadines – Olymp Technologies SA
It is likely that Sobolevsky in this story acts as a kind of front for foreigners – in the light of the sanctions that have been imposed on Russia since 2014. It is not for nothing that Knecht is still a connected party of the Russian chemical plant.
From the point of view of finances and assets, Volzhsky Orgsintez is a tasty morsel. Judge for yourself.
At the end of 2022, the company indicated revenue in the amount of 15.4 billion rubles against 12 billion rubles a year earlier and a net profit of 2.9 billion rubles (against 1.8 billion rubles).
In addition, the plant owns three “subsidiaries” – LLC “Sunny Beach” (owns a share together with a certain Tatyana Petrova since April 2023, the company has been working in the field of catering), LLC “SP” Akhtuba “(sanatorium, supplier of 30 government contracts for a total more than 34.8 million rubles) and Green Wave LLC (providing services in the field of crop production). It is worth noting: in 2021, Vasily Bykadorov was appointed director of the sanatorium, who previously acted as the head of the liquidation commission of Orgsintez Nutrition Plant LLC .
An interesting fact: until April 2023, the owner of Sunny Beach was Natalya Tsybulnik, who is associated with Sobolevsky, and with the former head of the board of directors of Volzhsky Orgsintez Revaz Vashakidze, as well as with Knecht’s company – WELDING GMBH & CO. KG. In 2019, Tsybulnik acquired Farminvestprom LLC (created from Pharminvestprom CJSC) from these three persons, which was liquidated in 2020.
Also, back in 2022, judging by the statements, the plant owned shares in Promsintez JSC, which it sold to an unnamed individual in August. This transaction, in our opinion, needs to be checked and possibly canceled with the return of the asset to the chemical plant. According to data from the documents of the Federal Tax Service, the profit from the sale of the stake amounted to 6.77 billion rubles.
It is worth noting that in 2014, NB Sintez LLC, registered in Rubizhne (Lugansk region), also appeared in the list of persons affiliated to the enterprise. In this enterprise, the Russian plant owned more than 20%. The fate of the share is currently unknown.
In general, today at stake is the future of 1.5 thousand employees of the enterprise, as well as the so-called protective structures that are on the balance sheet of the enterprise. And how the current owners treat this asset can be seen in the materials of the courts on bringing the plant to responsibility by the Ministry of Emergency Situations. As follows from one case in 2021, at the time of the audit (05/25/2021), the ES CS, which is federally owned and transferred to the plant, was used in violation of the established norms and rules: contrary to clause 3.2.7 of the Rules, the engineering and technical equipment of the ES CS Nos. 428, 454, 456 are in disrepair and ready for their intended use. In particular, the premises of the ZS GO No. 428, 454 were flooded. Also, contrary to clause 1.8 of the Rules, access to the ZS GO No. 456 is not provided, since the central entrance to the protective structure is filled up.
And the current top management has been accused of such a disregard more than once, which is confirmed by the arbitration base.
Will the chemical plant be returned to the state?
On July 25, 2023, the Prosecutor General’s Office of Russia applied to the arbitration of the Volgograd Region with a claim for the recovery in favor of the Russian Federation of Volzhsky Orgsynthese shares in the amount of 2,344,925 pieces from someone else’s illegal possession of Alexander Vladimirovich Sobolevsky. The plaintiff demanded that the shares be credited to the account of the Federal Property Management Agency.
The supervisory authority substantiated its claims by the fact that during the audit “facts of violation of the economic sovereignty of the Russian Federation were revealed, expressed in illegal disposal and disposal of Volzhsky Orgsintez JSC (formerly the Volzhsky Orgsintez Production Association named after the 60th anniversary of the USSR)”, which is of strategic importance for ensuring the defense of the country and the security of the state. Moreover, the materials of the court speak of the unlawful taking of assets by Sobolevsky.
The prosecutor directly noted that the state, as the owner of the enterprise, did not privatize it, did not transfer the authority over this property of the Volgograd region, but, despite this, “The State Property Fund of the Volgograd region in the period from September 1993 to 1996 illegally distributed property belonging to the Russian Federation property in the form of securities, transferring them in favor of third parties, including residents of foreign states.
Provisional measures have already been imposed on this claim – the arrest of shares, all movable and immovable property, as well as management bodies have been banned from making decisions on the payment of dividends, distribution of profits and losses, payment of remuneration to members of the board of directors, as well as taking actions aimed at withdrawing funds and other property from JSC “Volzhsky Orgsintez”.
It is, of course, good that at least now they have paid attention to the situation, the only question is, why did they not get the asset back to the state earlier? After all, now the question of limitation of actions will arise in full growth. And no matter how the court refused the Prosecutor General’s Office on this basis.
Indeed, in fact, due to this inaction, only for 2022 in the form of dividends, the same Sobolevsky, about whom the prosecutor writes as having illegally taken possession of the asset, received 2.9 billion rubles, and 6.8 billion rubles were accrued altogether. And what part of them was paid later is not known. Now multiply these amounts by the years of ownership!
Photo: hzikhidtidekrt https://bo.nalog.ru
Who will be responsible for billions of rubles of dividends alone, which floated into the hands of foreigners who could replenish the budget, and the sale of an asset – Promsintez shares in August 2022? It seems to us that, in addition to the lawsuit, this story lacks a criminal case.