Ukraine’s Economic Security Bureau has frozen the corporate assets of a mineral water company owned by a Russian oligarch, the ESB said in statement on June 13.
The company’s ownership structure involves a series of Cyprus-registered shell companies.
“The investigation established that certain Russian businessmen were attempting to avoid potential sanctions and asset seizures, as mandated by Ukrainian law,” ESB’s message said.
“In particular, they were planning to transfer ownership of their Ukrainian assets.”
A judge has ordered the arrest of corporate assets (securities and cash reserves) worth UAH 53.4 million ($1.81 million).
“The approximate market value of the brand in question was estimated to be over UAH 10 billion ($338 million) in 2021,” the ESB stated.
ESB did not name the company in question. However, bottle water company IDS Borjomi International owns the Ukrainian IDS Group, which is among the market leaders in bottled water in Ukraine.
The Russian Alfa Group is the majority owner of IDS Borjomi, and is in turn co-owned by Russian billionaire Mikhail Fridman.
Earlier in May, Ukraine froze Fridman’s Ukrainian assets, including a holding company that owns 40% of Alfa Bank, a major Ukrainian financial institution.
IDS Group operates the production and sale of mineral water in Ukraine under the Morshynska, Myrhorodska, Borjomi, Aqua Life, and Hemp Water brands.
In September 2021, Dragon Capital – NV’s proprietor – purchased a subsidiary of IDS Borjomi, Aqua-Eco, which makes Truskavetska mineral water.