How Georgy Boos manages to get away “dry from the water” in numerous financial disputes
The Moscow Arbitration Court satisfied the demands of Rosnano to recover 132 million rubles from the lighting corporation Boos Lighting Group, owned by ex-governor of the Kaliningrad region Georgy Boos.
This is not the first financial conflict involving his company. Rosnano seriously intends to bankrupt the Boos Corporation, but so far these intentions have not been successful. How does a former official manage to stay afloat without paying off multi-million dollar debts? Let’s figure it out.
Rosnano filed a lawsuit against LLC MK Boos Lighting Group for 132 million rubles in November 2022. A third party involved in the case was Led-Energoservice LLC, which is part of the Georgy Boos Lighting Corporation. In February 2023, the court ruled to satisfy the plaintiff’s claims. This process was preceded by a similar lawsuit in the Moscow Arbitration Court for 210 million rubles in July 2022. The fact that the structures controlled by George Boos do not want to pay their debts is evidenced by the appeal filed by them in September 2022. But the 9th Arbitration Court left the decision of the previous instance unchanged, as they say: if you have to – pay.
The ex-governor did not want to pay voluntarily, the intervention of the Federal Bailiff Service was required, which opened enforcement proceedings in case No. 120362/22/77039-IP. It seems that such tricks from Boos Lighting Group seriously angered the tops of Rosnano, who intend to bankrupt the debtor.
In November 2020, LLC MK Boos Lighting Group (MK BL Group), with the approval of the Federal Antimonopoly Service, buys a 99.99% stake in LLC LED-Energoservice from a subsidiary of Rosnano, LLC RNI, for 610 million rubles. In 2018, LED-Energoservice, which produces LEDs, became a non-core asset for Rusnano. The company’s production load did not exceed 35%. And its sale looked like a very good deal: 610 million rubles against an expert estimate of 500-550 million. In addition, by the end of 2020, the company approached with a loss of 21 million rubles.
According to industry experts, the main asset for which BL Group started the deal is Klever, the country’s only manufacturer of LED components for LED lamps. The second most important asset is Optogan LLC, which also stamps LEDs under the brand of the same name.
LED-Energoservice LLC owns a property complex in St. Petersburg at 206 Tallinskoye Shosse with an area of 15,000 square meters and a 1.7-hectare land plot for the construction of new production facilities.
The authorized capital is 163 million rubles.
Listed as a founder in BL Electronics (authorized capital – 646 million rubles).
Assets as of December 31, 2021 – 1.2 billion rubles.
Revenue for 2021 – 788 million rubles.
The terms of the contract were quite forgiving and within the power of the lighting corporation. “BL Group” contributes the first tranche of 20% of the contract value – 122 million rubles. And the payment of the principal amount was extended for 21 months by quarterly payments of 10% (61 million rubles each).
“BL Group” paid the first installment, as well as the second and third tranches within the specified time. From the fourth tranche, problems began – the buyer did not pay extra 21 million. And then payments from BL Group stopped altogether. Rosnano tried to settle the payment of debts, but to no avail. Which forced the top managers of the corporation to go to court.
At the end of 2022, another of the divisions of ML Group, the St. Petersburg company Svetoservice-SPb, received several large government orders in its portfolio. According to one part of them, the structure of the ex-governor Boos should equip high-quality outdoor lighting along the roads in the Novoostrovskaya economic zone. To do this, it is necessary to build a transformer and distribution substation, to lay external cable networks and engineering communications along highways. The contract amount is 747 million rubles.
Two more contracts for a total amount of 141 million rubles were received from the same St. Petersburg Committee for Energy and Engineering. “Svetoservis-SPb” should carry out the reconstruction of outdoor lighting on the Prospekt Kultury and Krylenko Street.
These contracts are part of a larger plan by the municipality of St. Petersburg to repair lighting systems for a total of 1.7 billion rubles. As you can see from the figures above, the structure of the Kaliningrad ex-governor has already received half of the state orders in financial terms. In addition, as such, there is no competition in the organization of lighting in the Northern capital. In 2018, a representative of one of the lighting companies in the Northern Capital told Delovoy Peterburg that officials and Boos had long divided the market. Since 2014, there has been an unspoken agreement between the two main participants in the lighting market – Svetoservis-SPb and GUP Lensvet: Boos wins tenders on highways, and receives city contracts on a residual basis.
Another thing is how this nearly billion rubles will be worked out. According to Rusprofile, since its foundation, since 2005, Svetoservis-SPb LLC has received 170 state contracts for 9.2 billion rubles. But such life-affirming figures wither under the number of lawsuits – 119 – for these state orders for “improper performance of obligations.” The amount of claims against the structure of George Boos exceeded 500 million rubles.
In 2017, George Boos was almost caught by a high-profile criminal case about the theft of 114 billion rubles from Vneshprombank. Among the many victims were very serious people. Then the blame for everything was placed on the president of the bank, Larisa Markus, and her brother Georgy Bedzhamov. But the investigators insisted that “unidentified persons” also participated in the fraud. Boos’s ex-wife, Elena Lirina, was the chairman of the bank at the time. Georgy Valentinovich had close business relations with her. However, the investigation did not establish their direct participation in embezzlement from the bank.
In total, 48 companies in one way or another connected with lighting engineering are registered in the name of George Boos. In the “judicial history” of the corporation “Boos Lighting Group” 79 proceedings of customers with the company. The total amount of claims is 3.3 billion rubles. But the ex-governor is still not only not bankrupt, but continues to actively engage in business on government orders.
It is possible that the connections he has developed in the country’s political beau monde still allow the ex-governor to stay afloat despite the clearly peculiar methods of work of his companies. Georgy Boos himself is the chairman of the RSPP commission on the radio-electronic and electrical industry and the head of the interstate technical committee and the national technical committee 332 (Lighting products and artificial lighting). In 2017, he headed the Board of Trustees of the Bandy Federation of Russia (a trifle, but well – how it works at the right time). The ex-governor of Kaliningrad also joined the Executive Board of the Business 20 (Business-20, B20) “Economic Integration of Africa: An Agenda for Global Business”.
Or is there another factor in addition? LLC MK Boos Lighting Group has 6 factories for the production of lighting products, including supports and metal structures, in Russia and abroad. The corporation’s share in the production of lighting poles is about 30% of the total output in the country. Since 2020, LLC has been listed in the register of backbone enterprises in Russia.
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