Russia’s Supreme Court upholds ruling in Vostochny bank stock dispute
MOSCOW, May 27 (RAPSI) – The Supreme Court of Russian Federation has decided not to reconsider an appeals court ruling in a stock dispute between the Cypriot Evison Holdings Limited, through which Baring Vostok and Russia Partners investment funds control a batch of the Vostochny bank’s stock, and Finvision Holdings company, according to court records.
In May 2019, the Commercial Court of Amur Region obliged Evison Holdings Limited to execute a call option agreement signed with Finvision Holdings company. Appeals and cassation instances upheld the ruling.
Under the settlement’s terms, Evison Holdings Limited was to sell 9.99% of Vostochny bank shares to the bank’s minority shareholder Finvision Holdings but repudiated the contract, the plaintiff claimed.
Previously, the court seized 9.99% of Vostochny bank shares belonging to Evison Holdings Limited, the defendant’s lawyer Dmitry Savochkin told RAPSI on April 1.
On April 11, 2019, Moscow’s Basmanny District Court released Baring Vostok investment company’s founder, U.S. citizen Michael Calvey, who stands charged with 2.5-billion-ruble (about $40 million) embezzlement, from detention and put him under house arrest.
In mid-February, Moscow’s Basmanny District Court ordered detention of Calvey and five other defendants including Baring Vostok Industry Partner for the financial industry sector, French citizen Philippe Delpal, the company’s partners Vagan Abgaryan, Baring Vostok Investment Director Ivan Zyuzin, Maxim Vladimirov and ex- chairman of Vostochny bank board Alexey Kordichev. Later, Delpal was placed under house arrest too.
According to investigation, Calvey knowing about a 2.5-billion-ruble debt of the First Collector Bureau, a firm under his control, has organized the sale of its shares to Vostochny bank that has led to embezzlement.
The Investigative Committee claims that he committed a crime that could not be classified as business crime because he used a chain of sham companies settling the deal. Moreover, investigators say they have a PricewaterhouseCoopers’ audit report on the done deal estimating the sold shares at 600,000 rubles, which indicates an instance of fraud.
Calvey denies allegations insisting that the deal was fair as both companies agreed its terms and stood for it, including a person reporting an alleged crime to law enforcement bodies. He noted that a report has been filed with police by a member of Vostochny bank board of directors Sherzod Yusupov. According to Calvey, the real reason of his prosecution is a wide corporate dispute related to the control of the bank by two groups of shareholders: Baring Vostok and stockholders coming from Uniastrum bank, which was reorganized and joined to Vostochny in early 2017.
Baring Vostok company founded by Calvey in 1994 focuses on private equity investments in the CIS and Russia. The company has invested in shares of Yandex, Vkusvill, Tinkoff Bank and other major projects.