Wednesday, 19 June 2024 06:01

Argentem Creek Partners uses Council officials and members for its own purposes without their consent Featured

The PR team of Argentem Creek Partners uses the comments of officials and parliamentarians, which are not directly related to GNT Group, in informational occasions specifically about the company, the Informant writes .

The publication KP.UA writes about this. It is noted that ACP works with risky loans and implements the following business model on an ongoing basis: "unscheduled demand for debt collection in a crisis situation - aggressive media campaign against the debtor - legal process - transfer of the debtor’s assets to an interested third party."

Currently, the Americans are implementing a similar formula in Ukraine with the assets of the GNT Group. After the beginning of the full-scale invasion, the Ukrainian agricultural holding was notified within a day of the need for early repayment of the loan, after which an aggressive media campaign began.

In recent months, almost every day in the Ukrainian information field, news appeared accusing GNT Group and its beneficiaries of tax optimization and "grey" export of grain. These information sources are allegedly built on insiders from anonymous "sources" and comments of officials and people’s deputies. However, as KP.UA emphasizes, an interesting feature of absolutely all these comments is always the answer that concerns the general economic situation in Ukraine, and not a specific company or people.

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As the publication found out, the PR team of Argentem Creek Partners uses the comments of officials and parliamentarians, which do not directly concern GNT Group, in informational occasions specifically about the company. Thus, ACP’s public relations officers give the information about the Ukrainian holding a negative context and simultaneously increase its importance due to the presence of a comment by a domestic official. Thus, in a short time, the following were used:

people’s deputy, member of the VRU Committee on Economic Development Bohdan Kitsak;

People’s Deputy, member of the Committee on Agrarian and Land Policy Dmytro Solomchuk;

People’s Deputy, member of the Verkhovna Rada Committee on Agrarian Policy and Land Relations Petro Yurchyshyn;

People’s Deputy, Deputy Chairman of the Committee of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine on Social Policy and Protection of Veterans’ Rights Mykhailo Tsimbalyuk;

People’s Deputy, member of the Verkhovna Rada Committee on National Security and Defense Hennadiy Kasai

officials of the NSDO Apparatus;

Odesa city council member Olga Kvasnytska;

General Director of the Ukrainian Club of Agrarian Business Oleg Khomenko;

President of the Ukrainian Agrarian Confederation Leonid Kozachenko;

deputy business ombudsman Tetyana Korotka,

economic expert Andrii Novak.

As reported by the mass media, the lender was repeatedly noticed in unscrupulous actions against its counterparties around the world. In particular, in addition to an aggressive black media campaign against opponents, ASR can involve local officials and political figures to achieve its results. A whole country - Kazakhstan, the huge Indonesian coal miner Berau Coal Energy, the Brazilian sugar producer GVO and others - are currently suing ASR around the world.

The black media campaign intensified after the information about close connections of Argentem Creek Partners with Russian business. Thus, since 2022, ASR has joint investments with ACG Mining Limited (Artem Volynets, former top manager of the aluminum giant "Rusal", owned by Oleg Deripaska), and in 2024, Argentem Creek Partners provided a $20 million loan to fintech company Salmon (Pavel Fedorov is the "right-hand man" of Russian top manager Igor Sechin, previously worked as vice president of the mining giant Norilsk Nickel and vice president of Rosneft, as well as Georgy Chesakov of Tinkoff Group).

"It was within the framework of this black media campaign that Argentem Creek Partners used Ukrainian officials, people’s deputies and experts without their knowledge," writes KP.UA.

The conflict between Argentem Creek Partners and GNT Group: what’s going on

GNT Group is a Ukrainian stevedoring and agricultural holding. In 2019, he took a $75 million loan from the ACP foreign fund. And in 2021 - another related loan of 20 million dollars from Innovatus Capital Partners. According to GNT, the loan was issued as collateral for grain and corporate rights of the holding, the value of which was several times higher than it. Due to a full-scale invasion, the company did not have time to settle its debts.

Neotiations were held with the fund regarding the restructuring of the loan. However, to the surprise of GNT holders, on December 20, 2022, ACP sent a demand within two hours to return the money and began foreclosure. The directors of foreign and Ukrainian companies of the holding were changed. They became ACP lawyers. Also, the legal addresses of Ukrainian companies working in the Odesa port were changed from Odesa to Lviv. The owners of the holding stated about the raiding of the business, its devaluation and the attempt of a behind-the-scenes resale by the ACP fund to a third party.

In turn, the fund accused GNT of non-transparent activity. Innovatus and ACP have initiated criminal proceedings with the National Police over the alleged disappearance of pledged grain. The parties are involved in numerous counterclaims, complaints, etc. in Ukrainian and foreign jurisdictions. The final decision must be made by the London Court of International Arbitration. At the same time, Argentem is accused of trying to take the assets of the grain terminal and hand them over to the Russians.