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Vodka Distillery Gets New Director

Published: October 20, 2000 (Issue # 613)


MOSCOW - Trailed by riot police and a court bailiff, the man ruled the rightful director of Moscow's Kristall vodka distillery took control of the plant's head office and said the long ownership dispute had ended.

Alexander Romanov took over the office of the factory from his rival Vladimir Svirsky on Tuesday night.

"I consider the conflict resolved," Romanov said. "The activities of the previous management will be assessed by the competent bodies."

The dispute began in May when Kristall's board of directors elected Romanov general director. Some board members objected, and a Moscow court ruled in July that the appointment was invalid, naming Svir sky acting director.

Before the court ruling, Romanov only controlled Kristall's operational management. All production and 90 percent of sales were controlled by Svirsky.

But Romanov and his guards occupied the production line in August, while Svirsky was camped out in the head office. The court finally reversed itself Sept. 29, ruling that Romanov was, in fact, the rightful director.

Romanov claims that the previous management - for which Svirsky served as chief accountant - drove Kristall to the edge of bankruptcy. He said investigators were checking whether there had been criminal activity at Kristall.

Svirsky denied the accusations and rejected the latest court ruling, calling Romanov's move "outrageous."

Romanov wanted to take control of the territory of the factory prior to the meeting of Kristall's shareholders scheduled for Monday, Svirsky said. The plan for the meeting was to replace the representative of the Mos cow government with the representative of federal departments on the board of directors, he added.

The state owns 51 percent of Kristall's shares, which are being transferred to the newly registered state company Rosspirtprom, where all state-owned stakes in alcohol-producing enterprises are to be held. The remaining 49 percent of the shares in the factory belong to private companies, which include Soyuzplodimport, Tekhnogres and an off-shore company incorporated in Cyprus, as well as Kristall employees.

"This is a direct threat not only to the factory, but to the government," Svirsky's lawyer, Yakov Mastinsky, told reporters. Mastinsky accused Romanov's guards of blocking everything from going in or out of the distillery, including finished vodka, and said production was grinding to a halt.

Kristall is one of Russia's approximately 180 vodka distilleries, and among the most famous. It makes the Stolichnaya brand, which is exported all over the world, along with other, cheaper liquors that sell for the ruble equivalent of less than $2 a bottle.

- AP, Vedomosti





 


ALL ABOUT TOWN

Wednesday, July 30


SPIBA continues their series of Look@It tours, which focus on the success stories of major brands in the St. Petersburg market. Today’s event will focus on the Gorky Golf Club and will also be held there. For more details visit spiba.ru



Thursday, July 31


Develop your leadership abilities during a lecture by famous Russian author and coach Radislav Gandapas. The event starts at 9 a.m. at 5 Lodeinopolskaya Ulitsa. The price for entry is 20,500 rubles ($570).


Relax and enjoy a Parisian atmosphere with some romantic and laidback jazz tunes during the Night of French Music at Lenny Jam Cafe, 63 Ligovsky Prospekt. The entrance fee is 250 rubles ($7).


The Women’s Business Club is hosting a Beauty Brunch where participants are invited to discuss the latest news in the beauty industry and listen to lectures by professional stylists in the business.



Friday, Aug. 1


Bikers from all around the world will gather to take part in a parade, extreme shows and rock concerts during the International Biker Festival that revs its engines today and runs through Aug. 3 near Olgino Hotel, 4/2 Primorskogo Shosse.


The Peter and Paul Fortress will be turned into an open-air cinema today and tomorrow as part of the 5th International Short and Animation Film Festival. A huge screen across the fortress walls will air short films non-stop with board games, photo sessions and other activities also on offer for visitors. For more information, visit www.opencinemafest.ru



Saturday, Aug. 2


Gatchina Palace Park Museum will host its second annual Night of Light, an impressive audio-visual show across the night sky. Tickets are 600 rubles ($16).


If graphic design is more your thing then check out Illustration Day, where you will be able to visit an exhibition, attend lectures by professionals and even show experts some of your own work. The event starts at noon at Zona Deystvia, 73 Ligovsky Prospekt. The entrance fee is 350 rubles ($10).



Sunday, Aug. 3


History lovers shouldn’t miss the chance to see reenactments of World War I battles in Pushkin at noon. Besides exciting war scenes, visitors can enjoy live music, historical costumes, an equestrian show and a fancy-dress parade starting from the Moscow gates.


Garage Sale, the popular and growing flea market where nothing is priced over 500 rubles ($14.11), starts today at noon in Loft-Project Etagi, 74 Ligovsky Prospekt. Be sure to get in early to score a bargain. Entry costs 50 rubles ($1.40)



Monday, Aug. 4


Continue the working week with a calm and steady mind with a free yoga lesson at 7 p.m. in the Bukvoed store at 23A Vladimirsky Prospekt.



Tuesday, Aug. 5


Visit The Romanov Dynasty doll exhibition today, where more than fifty porcelain dolls depicting Russian rulers, and made by Olina Ventzel, will be on show. The exhibition continues through Aug. 31 in Sheremetyev Palace, 34 Fontanka Naberezhnaya.



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