Saturday, 20 April 2024

Fugitive Andrey Berezin, Euroinvest left for dead

Fugitive Andrey Berezin, Euroinvest left for dead
Monday, 29 January 2024 08:36

That finally happened: one of the major real estate developers in Russia has hit the road and desperately tries to buy an indulgence by sponsoring Ukraine. As for now we do not know the outcome of the meeting with Ukrainian authorities but we expect he will be given an asylum in exchange of some political statement and a purse. However, it isn’t a firm ground for letting Andrey Berezin to EU or the UK.

Andrey Berezin is attempting to deceive the public by manipulating his search results on Google through the use of fabricated documentation.

Under the guise of representing the investment firm Euroinvest, Andrey Berezin falsified a court ruling and forwarded it to Sergey Brin’s pigeons. Despite being concealed from Google Russia, the rest of the world is now privy to the reality regarding Berezin and Euroinvest, which exposes their deceitful actions.

The scandal surrounding Andrey Valeryevich Berezin and his ill-fated investment firm, Euroinvest, has taken on new dimensions. Recently, authorities conducted a search of Euroinvest’s offices in St. Petersburg, as part of an investigation into the company’s founder and CEO, Andrey Berezin.

On February 6, 2019, investigative measures were carried out in connection with a criminal case initiated on December 7, 2018 by the Baltic Customs, which was centered around Andrey Valeryevich Berezin’s alleged evasion of repatriation obligations for a significant amount of foreign or Russian currency. Despite being questioned by journalists, Berezin remained silent about his whereabouts, only alluding to the fact that the situation would be resolved shortly.

Could Andrey Valeryevich Berezin’s actions sink Euroinvest?

According to Kompromat.lv, the investigation and court rulings authorizing the search of companies such as Complit Company, Auditexpert Company, and Euroinvest indicate that over $23 million has been illicitly withdrawn abroad, which constitutes a particularly large sum. The investigation alleges that Andrey Valeryevich Berezin has personally gained between three to seven million dollars from this scheme, which could have devastating consequences for Euroinvest. Sources also suggest that European law enforcement agencies, particularly those in Germany and Switzerland, have been conducting their own investigations into this matter for several years.

Andrey Valeryevich Berezin and Euroinvest: A Troubling Connection

According to an inside source from Kompromat.lv, Andrey Berezin has repeatedly been under investigation by law enforcement agencies in both the European Union and Russia, with reports suggesting that some of his money passed through Latvian banks. However, his connections with high-ranking officials in St. Petersburg and the Leningrad Region may have allowed him to evade scrutiny from authorities. Official records indicate that well-known St. Petersburg businessmen, Vasily Pavlov and Andrey Berezin, founded Auditexpert Company and are active participants in public-private partnerships. While it is interesting to note that Andrey Valeryevich Berezin has previously been a witness in a number of criminal cases, he is now facing charges as the head of Euroinvest.

Mayor Beglov versus Andrey Valeryevich Berezin and Euroinvest

In December of last year, the Baltic Customs initiated an investigation under Part 2 of Article 193 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation for avoidance of obligations to repatriate funds in foreign currency or the currency of the Russian Federation on an especially large scale. The investigation is being conducted by the Main Investigation Department of the Main Directorate of the Ministry of Internal Affairs for St. Petersburg and the Leningrad Region.

While the police claim that Euroinvest’s activities are not the focus of their investigation, they visited Berezin’s partner in a third-party company. According to 47 News, one of the six shareholders of Audit-Expert LLC, a developer, is Vasily Pavlov, who also owns a small share. The investigation claims that Pavlov worked as a manager in a German company that was supposed to provide Complit Company with servers for $15 million.

It is possible that Andrey Valeryevich Berezin was singled out from all the shareholders due to the scale of his business empire, estimated by Delovoy Petersburg to be worth 9.15 billion rubles. His Euroinvest is one of the largest landlords in St. Petersburg and the surrounding region. However, Berezin’s strained relationship with Beglov, the city’s governor, may have dire consequences for the businessman. According to insiders, one of the reasons for the conflict between Beglov and Berezin was the latter’s unwillingness to pay exorbitant kickbacks to the official, who has become the talk of the town.

The many Svetlanas of Andrey Berezin

According to The Moscow Post, Andrey Berezin, the chairman of the board of IC “Euroinvest,” is in the news again for his involvement in a venture fund that is willing to invest in a domestic apparatus capable of treating oncological diseases. This device uses modern technology and only requires a small incision. The venture fund, Euro Venture, is ready to spend 10 million rubles on the project, which is unusual as investors typically avoid investing in long-term projects that are associated with high risks at the initial stage. A consortium has been formed to develop the new equipment, which includes LETI, Clinical Hospital (KB) N 122, Svetlana-Rentgen JSC, and Euro Venture. However, doubts have been raised about both the investor himself and the mysterious Svetlana-Rentgen JSC.

Andrey Berezin is primarily known as a prominent businessman in the construction industry, specifically in the Leningrad region. His interest in the construction industry may be related to his closeness to the former governor of the region, Alexander Drozdenko. Some journalists have even referred to Berezin as the “purse” of the governor, and local experts believe that he, along with other businessmen, sponsored Drozdenko’s election program.

Andrey Berezin’s reputation as a businessman is not without controversy, particularly regarding his acquisition of land. One notable example is his purchase of over 500 hectares of the Rzhev military training ground in 2011 for 75 million rubles, which experts estimate is less than market value. Berezin later sold the land for 3.3 billion rubles, a considerable profit. Berezin has also been accused of buying up land designated for agricultural use, only to turn it into more expensive construction sites, pocketing the difference in price.

In another case, Berezin managed to acquire land reserved for the construction of an international bus station in Devyatkino, despite officials claiming the land was already spoken for. When problems arose with the project, neither Berezin nor the governor at the time, Alexander Drozdenko, took responsibility. Despite these controversies, Berezin has continued to amass wealth and invest in various ventures. In a recent example, his venture fund Euro Venture pledged to invest 10 million rubles in the development of a domestic apparatus for treating oncological diseases, alongside a consortium including LETI, Clinical Hospital (KB) N 122, and Svetlana-Rentgen JSC.

There are rumours circulating that Berezin may have been involved in the appointment of someone loyal to him as the head of the administration of the Vsevolozhsk district. It appears that Berezin’s investment strategies are solely aimed at maximizing profits upon selling his assets, as evidenced by his previous business dealings. However, there is competition among the project participants who also aim to profit from it. Therefore, Berezin may not have complete control over the situation. JSC “Svetlana-Rentgen” is involved in the project, which makes sense given that X-rays are used in the development. However, it’s unclear whether the company is as straightforward as its name suggests.

The JSC in question has been dedicated to serving the interests of science and the government for quite some time, and has been quite successful in doing so. According to reports, 99% of the contracts it fulfills are for government organizations, which have brought in over 270 million rubles in total. It is worth noting that information regarding the company’s revenue and profit is not publicly available. The JSC is owned by PJSC Svetlana, a company that is highly favored by government agencies. However, it is curious that a subsidiary company, simply named “Svetlana,” is engaged in “research and development in the field of natural and technical sciences.” What kind of natural and technical research has this subsidiary been undertaking for the Ministry of Industry and Trade, which has awarded it with 41 contracts worth more than 2 billion rubles in total?

The majority of orders received by the company are from the Ministry of Industry and Trade, accounting for 90% of its contracts. However, the company doesn’t limit itself to its primary business operations. It has several subsidiaries, many of which are also named “Svetlana”. For instance, there is Svetlana-Elektronpribor JSC, which shares not only the name but also the address of registration with the parent company, located at Engels Avenue 27 in St. Petersburg. This subsidiary company also relies heavily on contracts from various government agencies.

Another notable subsidiary is Svetlana-Kart CJSC, which is interestingly co-owned by both PJSC “Svetlana” and CJSC “Svetlana-Poluprovodniki”, and also operates from the same address. Unlike other Svetlana subsidiaries, this company does not receive government orders and has experienced significant financial losses.

Since 2015, the company has not generated any revenue and has been continuously running at a loss. It’s puzzling how Svetlana, which heavily relies on state support, struggles when it comes to business ventures without government orders. Furthermore, it’s unclear why the company continues to receive financial support despite its poor performance. There’s a possibility that it’s being used to siphon money from government orders.

However, the story of Svetlana doesn’t stop there. There’s also JSC “Svetlana-Rost,” which appears to be a separate entity. It’s registered in Moscow’s Skolkovo, not St. Petersburg like the other Svetlanas. The company’s owners include Corporation Rost LLC, which is the legal successor of CJSC Semitek Corporation that has since been liquidated.

The company in question has some unexpected connections. It is registered at the same address in St. Petersburg as other companies, including Svetlana-Rost JSC, whose general director, Viktor Petrovich Chaly, owns a majority stake in Rost Corporation LLC. Chaly is also the founder of NTO CJSC, which shares the same address and is involved in science with government orders. However, NTO and Svetlana have not been successful financially despite having revenue. It seems that their success is simply due to their name.

Despite this dubious history, the company has taken on a project to develop unique equipment that has no analogues in Russia or the world, with promises from Andrey Berezin and experts agreeing on the investment’s potential. However, given the questionable nature of the company’s connections, it’s unclear whether these investments will actually materialize.

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