Ukraine sells Russian-owned PentoPak plant: What is known and why its management is still operating
Photo: PentoPak

The week's main news in the privatization market was the sale of the PentoPak plant in Boryspil, which produces packaging for meat products. PentoPak's customers included major companies such as Rud, TM Globino and Myasna Gildiya.

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In February 2024, the High Anti-Corruption Court of Ukraine (HACC) confiscated the property of Russian-Greek businessman Ivan Savvidis at the request of the Anti-Corruption Action Center. The plant was transferred to the State Property Fund (SPFU) to prepare it for privatization and sale.

PentoPak will be the first asset confiscated from Russians that the SPFU will attempt to sell through ProZorro.Sale auctions. It's worth noting that since 2024, the Fund for Elimination of the Consequences of Russia's Armed Aggression has been funded since 2024 by the sale of confiscated Russian assets. The auction is scheduled for May 31, with a starting price of $5.1 million. This asset is classified under small privatization objects.

How did the Russian Ivan Savvidis buy PentoPak and pay taxes to the Russian budget?

The PentoPak plant was established in 1998. Ivan Savvidis bought part of it in 2011 and took full control two years later. Savvidis owns the Atlantis-Pak company in Russia, where he is one of the largest food packaging producers.

Before the victory of the Revolution of Dignity in 2014, Russian companies actively sought to enter the Ukrainian market, seeing it as a profitable development opportunity. At that time, the Russian newspaper Kommersant wrote that Atlantis-Pak couldn't enter the market directly because Ukraine protected local manufacturers. Therefore, Savvidis purchased production facilities in Ukraine.

Ukraine sells Russian-owned PentoPak plant: What is known and why its management is still operating
Ivan Savvidi (Photo – EPA STR)

Currently, PentoPak is registered under Ivan Savvidis' wife, Kiriaki Savvidis. They owned it through the Ukrainian subsidiary of their main company, Atlantis-Pak Ukraine. According to the Russian State Information Resource of Financial Accounts, companies controlled by Kiriaki Savvidis paid over 250 million rubles (over $3.2 million at the 2021 exchange rate) in profit taxes to the Russian budget in 2021. In addition, their activities are regulated and controlled by various Russian ministries and agencies.

The Lychakivskyi District Court of Lviv City found that the taxes paid by Ivan Savvidis' company helped finance Russia's security sector and defense industry.

Ivan Savvidis has a long history of hostility toward Ukraine. He publicly welcomed Russia's annexation of Crimea. His chain of grocery stores, Assorti, has been operating in Crimea since 2014, and the organization he heads, Greeks of Russia, has been publicly sending aid to the Russian occupiers in Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts since early 2022.

Why is Savvidis' management still running the plant?

The auction for the sale of the plant is scheduled for May 31. After the confiscation, Vladlen Lozovyi, who ran the enterprise under the Russian owners, remains its director, and Ivan Savvidis' wife is still listed as the beneficiary in the registers.

The SPFU told that an entry in the Unified State Register of Legal Entities and Individual Entrepreneurs about the previous beneficiary is not an obstacle to publishing a notice of sale. The change of the owner is part of the process of preparing the property for auction. The court has approved the change and the SPFU is waiting for the order to start the process. The changes are expected to take place within the next two weeks.

SPFU officials are positive about the management inherited from Ivan Savvidis. According to the representatives of the Fund, the management of PentoPak under the leadership of Vladlen Lozovyi has facilitated the preparation of the enterprise for privatization. After the sale of the plant, the new owner will evaluate the work of the management and make personnel decisions accordingly.