In the story, which aired the program “Vesti Nedeli” on TV channel “Russia 1”, tells that in the late 2000s, the businessman Suleiman Kerimov brought to the offshore company “National telecommunications” (NTK), he was going to sell on the stock market. Cable operator with an audience of tens of millions of viewers “instantly laid eyes American private equity funds”, then in the situation decided to intervene FSB, learned channel.
“The decision was made for the return of state control over this asset,” says an unnamed employee of the FSB, quoted by “Russia 1”.
According to the channel, to collect half a billion dollars, which the owner estimated the cable operator, the state turned to the business. The pool of companies responding included “national media group”, “Severstal”, “Surgutneftegas”, “Sberbank”, VTB and “Gazprombank”. For $1.5 billion they bought 100% of shares of the company “National telecommunications” from offshore, and then handed it to “Rostelecom” for the same money.
“We carried out the task of maintaining state control over a strategic asset of the Russian Federation. And she was fulfilled,” — said the source channel from the FSB.
Before about the role of intelligence in the purchase of an STC have been reported. As wrote Forbes, in 2007 the offshore company Tokido Holdings Suleiman Kerimov has provided a loan of 3.8 billion rubles at 9% per annum of the STC – this company also controlled by Kerimov. The following year, 100% of NTK shares bought national media group (NMG), founded in 2008, the co-owner of Rossiya Bank Yury Kovalchuk and his partners “Severstal” and “Surgutneftegaz”. The amount of the transaction 2008, the parties were not disclosed. The sources of the newspaper “Vedomosti” argued that speech can go about $1.5 billion a Year later, just over 71% of the STC acquired by Rostelecom, the deal amounted to about $1 billion, Forbes wrote. Now the NTK through the “child” of the structure owns the largest cable operator in Moscow – “Mostelecom”, providers cable TV and broadband access in some regions of Russia (Moscow region, St. Petersburg, Novosibirsk, etc.).
By the end of 2007, the revenue of NTK – then the largest Russian operator of cable TV and Internet was about $216 million Telecommunications business Kerimov, as I told then the sources of Kommersant, may be of interest to American Liberty Media (Discovery channel) and the investment Fund Providence Equity Partners. Liberty Media just held its expansion into the cable TV markets in Central and Eastern Europe, developed new markets, and Providence wanted to expand its presence in the post-Soviet space.
NTK is mentioned in “the Panama document”. As follows from them, in the fall of 2010 Tokido Holdings has transferred the right to claim the debt is 3.8 billion rubles., another offshore — Desmin Holdings, and the firm in turn ceded it for $1 Continental Sandalwood, which is associated with cellist and friend of the Russian President Sergey Roldugina. After the deal with Rostelecom Roldugin allegedly received duty and another 1 billion rubles in the form of interest, according to the documents.