Prosperous Enterprise Catches Raiders Attention

Prosperous Enterprise Catches Raiders Attention


It might seem that hostile takeovers of prosperous Russian enterprises no longer happen. Yes, they do: Kuchuksulfat is a recent target of raiders. The details are in the article below.

Kuchuksulfat, a prosperous and stably operating company in the Altai territory, has been under the pressure of mass media and authorities for more than half a year. The owners of the firm are being offered to sell it below a fair market price. Kuchuksulfat’s administration believes that a hostile takeover is underway.

Kuchuksulfat manufactures high-quality sodium sulfate for the production of laundry detergents. The enterprise is the backbone of the urban settlement of Stepnoe Ozero and one of the ten largest taxpayers in the region. It employs about 1,200 people. It is one of the few plants in the region that has increased its production 2.5 times compared to the Soviet period.

The successful business has got into the spotlight. In 2017-2019, there were numerous inspections by the supervisory authorities, the Federal Tax Service, the Federal Service for Supervision of Natural Resources (Rosprirodnadzor), the Prosecutor General’s Office, and the Environmental Prosecutor's Office. At the same time, an Alfa Group consortium representative contacted the company's shareholders with an offer to sell the enterprise at a price that the shareholders considered to be several times too low.

Since mid-2020, mass media outlets have published more than a dozen negative articles as Kuchuksulfat inspections continued. Nearly 300 enquiries have been sent to the company, a source at the company told Kuchuksulfat then appealed to law enforcement authorities.

The Investigative Committee for the Altai territory launched a preliminary inquiry against Rosprirodnadzor inspectors. According to, several employees of the agency admitted to falsifying the inspection report.

Kuchuksulfat started legal defense against Rosprirodnadzor officials’ actions. In the information letter (the document is available to the editorial board) the company says that no claims against Kuchuksulfat were made by supervisory or law enforcement authorities. At the same time, "the illegal measures organized by the raider party create an absolutely threatening situation for the shareholders and members of their families."

According to Altapress sources, AEON and Alfa-Group have recently been showing interest in Kuchuksulfat.

Alfa Group is associated with Mikhail Friedman, German Khan, and Alexei Kuzmichev. The consortium includes Alfa Capital, Alfa Strakhovanie, Rosvodokanal, and Pyaterochka. The AEON corporation, whose board of directors is headed by Roman Trotsenko, brings together the Novaport holding (airports), river transport enterprises, SDS-Azot, and AEON-Development, a real estate developer.

According to Kontur-Focus, in 2019, Kuchuksulfat revenue amounted to 5.6 bln rubles ($75.66 mln.) Net profit is 857 mln rubles ($11.59 mln.) Dmitry Goryunov is the company CEO. The board of directors is headed by Vasily Gamayunov, the former head of the Federal Security Service department for the Altai territory.

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