Ukraine’s Kharkiv Tractor Plant announces changes in shareholding structure

Official statement of Siegfried Wolf, a shareholder of Ukrainian Kharkiv Tractor Plant, on the situation at the facility

Vienna (OTS) - Siegfried Wolf, a renowned Austrian investor, a shareholder and a member of the boards of directors of the international most succsessful automotive and construction companies, a former head of Magna International Inc., announces changes in a shareholding structure of Ukrainian-based Kharkiv Tractor Plant (XTZ).

“In April 2016, I made an agreement with Oleksandr Yaroslavsky, the founder and president of Ukrainian-based DCH Group that he would rejoin to shareholders of Kharkiv Tractor Plant, one of the assets I’ve invested into. Our partnership with Yaroslavsky will give fresh impetus to the plant. We’ve known each other for a long time, Oleksandr is a man of his word who is spoken well by his business partners including foreign ones. That’s the reason I’ve turned to Yaroslavsky and asked him to become a shareholder of XTZ again when my Ukrainian assets were under threat,” Siegfried Wolf says.

Wolf also says that his decision came amid a troubled situation at the plant that looks like an attempt of an illegal takeover: "Some specific Ukrainian security enforcers are currently unfolding large-scale campaigns against XTZ aiming to undermine the plant’s economics, to knock out international investors from Ukraine and to make Ukrainian assets unattractive for international investors. Ukrainian Security Service and its Kharkiv branch carried out four searches at XTZ during March 21-April 8, 2016 seizing financial and other crucial documents. No accusations related to the alleged economic crimes have been made so far.

Not only these actions undermine trust of international community and cast a shadow on Ukraine’s investment climate but also put the fates of XTZ’s 2,200 employees in danger. Being a responsible employer and a taxpayer (as of 2015, the plant’s tax payments reached over 100 million hryvnias), XTZ is at risk of shutdown because of the inability to make payments to its suppliers.

That said, I see no possibilities for a once successful enterprise to keep implementing its strategy if anti-XTZ campaign continues. I don’t rule out a possibility to attract international institutions and lawyers to protect my investment. It may lead to serious sanctions against those behind a raider attack that use Ukraine’s name as a cover,” Wolf says.

In conclusion Wolf adds: “My goal behind an acquisition of the plant’s stake was to take an active role in developing the facility that boasts a vast potential in the production of agricultural machinery, tractors and their international promotion. I believe that together with Oleksandr Yaroslavsky we will resist the destruction of one of Ukraine’s largest automotive plants.”

Details of the deal haven’t been disclosed.

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