Romanian politicians have condemned the Russian invasion of Ukraine, noting countless times that Russia must be severely sanctioned by the European community. Despite the many public outputs of the people’s elected, Russian companies in our country continue to carry out their activities, earning millions of lei. From oil and gas, some businessmen have been able to infiltrate areas such as national security, providing personal information to the great oligarchs pulling the strings in the shadows. One more difficult thing to understand is that Russian businessmen continue to round off their revenues despite the sanctions imposed, with the most affected being people in Russia working in other fields, such as sports, art and culture. Everyone is equal, but those with money are more equal than others.
Perhaps among the most important companies led by the Russians from our country is Citypay SRL, established in 2010 by a citizen of Kazakhstan, Dmitriy Bibik, who withdrew a year later and the shares held were transferred to Sushima Management Limited, Cypriot legal entity. The company has a chain of self-pay terminals that has expanded considerably throughout Romania.
In 2015, Evdakov Konstantin, one of Putin’s ex-wife’s associates, Ludmila Aleksandrovna Shkrebneva, came to the fore. The two are associated with a fast credit company in Russia. In the 11 years of activity, Citypay SRL did not make any profit, despite the fact that the turnover always exceeded the order of tens of millions of lei. Specifically, last year, the turnover was over 12 million lei, registering losses of 2.4 million lei. Moreover, the number of employees in 2021 was only 10 people, most of them in 2015, when Evdakov came to run the company, along with another Russian, Alexey Victorovici Shesternin. The Citypay network in our country received a helping hand in the manufacture of self-pay terminals from a Russian company, CMT Engineering.
In mid-2022, Citypay’s associates decided to install as administrator the Moldovan citizen Tudor Creanga, with full powers for a term of 2 years. We remind you that in 2014, a year before Evdakov Konstantin owned the company, he was co-opted, as an associate of Internet Partners LTD, a legal entity in the British Virgin Islands.
We go further and talk about Elkas Home SRL, a company founded in 2008 in the village of Lețcani, Iași, and having as beneficiary Glukhov Sergey, a controversial character from the Russian sphere. Immediately after the USSR fell, Sergey was installed director of the Russian bank Globex led by oligarch Anatoly Motylev. Sergey was a shareholder in Last Invest Corp in Belize, with shares in the Russian concrete factory Alviko.
The founders of the company that deals with the manufacture of metal constructions and component parts of metal structures are Stratan Valerian, Munteanu Vitalie and Salinschi Afansii. If at the beginning, all three had shares in the company, currently, Elkas Home SRL has as main shareholders Glukhov Sergey and Munteanu Vitalie. The latter was associated with four other companies that had no profit. The administrator Elkas Home SRL is Palii Alexandru who, in 2014, founded the company Lastor Invest Corp SRL. It deals with construction works of residential and non-residential buildings, and in the last year, the company has had losses of over 640 thousand lei, at a business of 4.6 million lei.
Returning to Elkas Home SRL, the company owned by the Russian Sergey had in 2021 a profit of almost 52 thousand lei and a turnover of over 13.3 million lei. From 2008 until now, Elkas has always made a tiny profit from turnover. In 2010 and 2011, it had losses of almost 3 million lei.
A Russian business aims to deliver pizza with the drone
For several years, a fast food brand appeared in Russia in 2011, Dodo Pizza, began to open several restaurants in the country. The company’s associates are Bolocan Sergiu and Milash Roman, and the future plans are very ambitious, given that they announced that they want to become the first to deliver pizza with drone. Dodo Pizza has two restaurant formats, one for shopping malls and the other is the city format.
With a number of 100 employees, in 2021 Dodo Pizza registered a profit of 240 thousand lei, at a turnover of 14.5 million lei. Over time, people close to Bolocan Sergiu were appointed as administrator.
A less known thing is the fact that the company Dodo Pizza was called Peststop Electronics SRL, the founders being the Moldovan Bolocan Sergiu and Bolocan Ecaterina. The first money they obtained was from the sale of ultrasonic anti-rodden alarms and other pests, in 2017 changing their name to Dodo Pizza Lujerului SRL. If at present, in Romania there are 8 restaurants belonging to the Russian brand, Bolocan Sergiu announced that by 2027, Dodo Pizza would have 100 restaurants.
XM Textiles Sud Est Distribution SRL, a company based in Ilfov County, Buftea and deals with the trade of textiles, fur garments, footwear and leather goods has as beneficiaries two Russians: Ivanov Maskim and Stoliarov Igor.
Founded by XM Textiles Europe UAB, based in Lithuania, and Stoliarov Igor, a Russian citizen based in Hungary in 2016, the Romanian company initially had a turnover of 0 lei. For 2021, the profit reached over 1.8 million lei, the turnover being 40 million lei, having a number of only 16 employees. In addition to Ivanov Maksim and Stoliarov Igor, in 2021, the Moldovan citizen Cojocari Veaceslav became an associate at XM Textiles Sud Est Distribution SRL.
Another well-known Russian company that makes its century in Romania is Gazpromneft Marine Bunker Balkan SA, which, from 2012 to 2021 recorded only losses, given that the turnover was in the order of hundreds of millions of lei. For example, in 2019, at a turnover of 414 million lei, Gazpromneft had losses of 685 thousand lei, with 27 employees. Last year, the company had a turnover of over 357 million lei, the profit being also minus, of 69 thousand lei, the number of employees being the same.
The beneficiaries of the company are the majority in Russia: Anichkin Nikita, Medvedev Alexey, Osipov Vitaly and Uteshev Roman and a Romanian, Condrat Vladimir, whose mandate has expired.
Perhaps the most important figure is Medvedev Alexey, who has waged tough negotiations with European countries on gas supplies immediately after the annexation of Crimea. Medvedev was the head of Gazprom’s export business, even though he was replaced by the head of Elena Barmistrova in 2014.
If before we talked about a fast food chain in Russia that wants to expand in Romania, another Russian giant, which deals with the sale of food, beverages and tobacco, Torgservice RM SRL, which operates the Svetofor business in our country, plans to enter the Romanian market with the Apple brand.
Svetofor-controlled MERE chain of stores controls more than 1,500 stores in Russia, Belarus, China and Kazakhstan, owned by the Schneider family (Ivan, Andrey and Sergey) and Kilizhekov Rustam, Iakovlev Valeriy and Veikulainen Andrei.
The story of the Schneider family is a film one, given that they are Germans from the Volga, being refugees during World War II. After the fall of communism, they dealt with the sale of alcohol, the money earned investing them in the development of a chain of pharmacies. After the crisis of 2009 that hit Russia hard, the family that owns Svetofor decided to reorient itself towards the sale of cheap food.
With a number of 100 employees in our country, Svetofor „can boast” that from 2017 to 2021 it did not make any profit from selling food at a reduced price. In 2021, at a turnover of over 52 million lei, the profit was zero lei. Moreover, in 2020, the company controlled by the Schneider family had losses of 2.8 million lei.
A Ukrainian secretary of state said before the invasion of Ukraine that the opening of MERE stores in the Kherson, Odessa, Nikolaev and Zaparoyie regions is nothing more than a special operation of Russia’s special services, trying to promote Kremlin propaganda.