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9 Kas 2023


Ukraine: Govt. adds Georgian wine producer Bolero to intl. war sponsors list over increased exports to Russia & continued cooperation with sanctioned businessmen

Georgian companies cooperating with sanctioned Russians: Bolero Group added to the list of international sponsors of war, 9 November 2023

Imports of wines from Georgia to Russia increased by 49% in the first quarter of 2023, despite the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The National Agency on Corruption Prevention (NACP) has added Bolero, a leading Georgian group of wine companies, to the list of international sponsors of war. 

The united group of wineries includes: Bolero & Company Ltd, GVMT GROUP LLC and GRUZVINPROM LLC. The sole beneficiary of the companies is Karichashvili Vakhtang, who has Russian citizenship and is also a business partner of Bidzina Ivanishvili’s cousin. Between January 2022 and October 2023, these companies exported more than $68 million worth of goods to Russia. THE GROUP’S COMPANIES PROCESSED MORE THAN $3.5 BILLION WORTH OF GOODS. Together, the group’s companies process more than half of the grapes grown in Georgia.

Bolero & Company Ltd’s financial report states that a significant portion of the company’s revenue is generated by sales in the Russian market...Bolero Group is also actively cooperating with companies associated with the Russians under sanctions. 

For example, among the companies in Russia with which Bolero & Company Ltd cooperates is Logistics Alternative LLC, which is controlled by Magnit PJSC. The main shareholder of Magnit PJSC  (29.2% of shares) is the Marathon Group of Alexander Vinokurov, who is under sanctions from the EU, the UK, Canada, Switzerland, Australia, Ukraine, and New Zealand. In addition, he is the son-in-law of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Sergey Lavrov.Vinokurov was the one who, along with 36 other businessmen, met with Russian President Vladimir Putin and other members of the Russian government a few days before Russia’s large-scale invasion of Ukraine to discuss the impact of international sanctions.

GVMT Group LLC is a supplier to Bristol Retail Capital LLC . The founder of the latter is Mercury Retail Group Limited, which is associated with the sanctioned Russians Igor Kesayev and Sergey Katsiyev.

Although Georgia itself became a victim of Russian aggression in 2008, some Georgian companies, forgetting history, continue to actively cooperate with Russia. After the full-scale invasion of Ukraine by the terrorist state of Russia in 2022, the Bolero group of Georgian wine companies significantly increased its exports to Russia and began to cooperate with the sanctioned Russians...

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