Russian banks worried about Agrokor’s huge debt

Agrokor owes a billion euros more than what the company has revealed – an unnamed source from the Russian bank, VTB has disclosed to the reporters of the Russian daily, Vedomosti.

Based on the official assessment of Agrokor’s debt, done by the company’s management, the company allegedly owes 40 billion Croatian kunas. However, Vedomosti projects that the 1.4 billion EUR that VTB and Sberbank had loaned to the troubled Croatian retailer would end up being “the biggest fiasco of the Russian state banks abroad”.

Citing anonymous sources from Sberbank and VTB Bank, the Russian business daily also writes that Sberbank has already ‘reserved’ a billion euros from its banks just in case it is left short-handed once the situation with Agrokor is resolved. Vedomosti also claims that VTB has done the same, and has reserved 300 million euros just in case.

The difference between the two Russian banks is that VTB did approve fresh loans to Agrokor, whereas Sberbank refused to do that and launched legal proceedings in Serbia and Slovenia.

Sberbank is seeking foreclosure on shares which one of Agrokor’s companies, Jamnica holds in Belgrade-based MG Mivela Company, and Jamnica Mineralna Voda, based in Ljubljana. Jamnica has served as a guarantor on a number of loans granted to its parent company, Agrokor.,

There are also reports that Sberbank Ljubljana has requested the issuance of an interim measure on prohibiting the sale of the mentioned business shares.

Vedomosti goes on to say that the banks have been complaining about the Croatian authorities and their empty promises that the situation will be saved.

The Russian daily also says that, when lending the first 600 million euros to Agrokor, Sberbank did not protect itself as it would usually do when lending money. The same goes for the subsequent 300 million euros that the bank also lent to Agrokor, as well as for another 100-million-euro loan this year.

Commenting on the decision made by Sberbank from May this year to sell its 18.5% share in one of Agrokor’s companies, Mercator (which was one of the loan guarantors), Vedomosti says that Sberbank would get only up to 180 million euros.

(Vesti Online, 21.08.2017)

This post is also available in: Italiano

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