Posted 29 декабря 2022, 11:15

Published 29 декабря 2022, 11:15

Modified 29 декабря 2022, 11:22

Updated 29 декабря 2022, 11:22

The elevator doesn't go any further. The legendary Moscow plant risks not getting out of bankruptcy

29 декабря 2022, 11:15
The optimism of import substitution is often shattered by the harsh reality. It would seem that foreigners have left, the market has been liberated. Work and be happy. But, for example, there are no reasons for joy in the production of elevators. One plant is already in bankruptcy, the other is in losses. And attempts to save them are met with greed.

Karacharovsky Mechanical Plant (KMP) is a legendary enterprise. Lifting mechanisms were built here for servicing the Buran spacecraft, for the Vostochny cosmodrome, the Ostankino TV tower, the main building of the Moscow State University and many other landmark buildings for the country. The company has been teetering on the brink of collapse for the past two years. KMZ crossed this invisible line in March 2022, when the arbitration court declared the company bankrupt.

It can be said for a long time that the elevator factory was unlucky with the owners. Until the mid-2010s, KMZ was part of the structure of Promsvyazbank of scandalous entrepreneurs Dmitry and Alexey Ananyev, who are now hiding from Russian justice. In 2015, the company was completely transferred to the management of the Ryazan company FPC Invest. And a couple of years ago, the plant changed owners again. But the fact is that the key plant for the construction industry lies on its side and the prospects are vague.

Dom Bank is showing interest in Karacharovsky Mechanical Plant. The Russian Federation, which owns the second largest elevator manufacturer in the country – the Shcherbinsky Plant. The head of the bank, Vitaly Mutko, once again confirmed these plans not so long ago: to merge the two enterprises into a single holding.

"95% of the existing housing stock is provided with Russian elevators. In this structure, the key plant is the plant that now belongs to the HOUSE.The Russian Federation, is the Shcherbinsky Elevator-building plant.  We have the Karacharovsky plant, we are now engaged in its withdrawal from bankruptcy, it will enter our DOM.RF group", - TASS quotes Vitaly Mutko. However, the industry notes that it will be extremely difficult to implement these plans.

Firstly, it was not possible to improve the Karacharovsky Mechanical Plant in the two years that the observation procedure lasted. There are no super profits in this business, maybe that's why the Ananyevs were not engaged in the development of the asset, but simply accumulated debts. This thesis is also confirmed by the fact that the Shcherbinsky plant does not shine with financial results. With an annual turnover of more than 10 billion rubles, the company is teetering on the brink of profitability. According to the tax report, the company in 2020 brought 59 million rubles of net profit, and in 2021 generated losses in the amount of more than 209 million rubles.

Secondly, Dom.rf is facing the interests of another large VTB bank, which is a lender of Karacharovsky Mechanical Plant. In general, the company owes more than 8.1 billion rubles. The largest creditors are LLC "Urban Mechanics", which belongs to the Dom structure.RF of the company "SZ DOM.RF Development". The volume of liabilities is 6.3 billion rubles, or 77% of the total debt of KMZ. The second lender is BM-Bank, which is part of the VTB Group. The plant owes him 1.6 billion rubles, or about 20% of accounts payable.

Both large and important banks for the country's economy are now on the verge of a corporate conflict. Since the plans announced by Vitaly Mutko are hitting the interests of VTB. How will Dom.rf come into possession of Karacharovsky Mechanical Plant? For example, it can plug a huge financial hole with money, pay off the obligations of the plant. But to do this, you need to find this money, and secondly, then the old owners, who still have a number of offshore companies, will come into play, because if there are no debts, they can return to managing the plant. This option looks fantastic. The second scenario is the purchase of the entire property complex of the plant from the auction. This is where the battle with the VTP will unfold. The entire Karacharovsky Mechanical Plant is estimated at two to three billion rubles. If Dom.rf deposits this money at auction, the bankruptcy trustee will immediately return it to the bank, since this amount does not cover the entire debt of the plant to Dom.rf. And VTB, and even more so other creditors will not receive anything at all.

The first signals of the upcoming confrontation have already been noticed. Thus, VTB actively opposed the candidacy of the bankruptcy trustee Dmitry Kholev, who was appointed at the request of Dom.rf Bank, as the largest lender. In addition, the rights of Dom.rf to a mechanical plant in general can be questioned if you start digging into the recent history of the enterprise and financial documentation.

According to a source close to the process, the huge debt that Karacharovsky Mechanical Plant is now tied to the House.the Russian Federation, was formed under the old owner. And initially the plant borrowed this money from the bank "PSB" of the Ananyev brothers. In fact, one part of the holding borrowed from another. These are relations of affiliated persons and it is still necessary to find out whether the plant really received this money, or the debt existed only on paper. "Urban mechanics", through which Dom.rf participates in the bankruptcy of the plant, is only the legal successor of the claim rights. With such a disposition, the security forces can also intervene in the case, which will only aggravate the conflict.

The possible merger of Karacharovsky Mechanical Plant and SchLZ into one holding has been discussed since 2019, when the first bankruptcy processes began. However, experts note that there are a lot of unknowns in the merger of factories into one company, to which no one has yet given answers.

"It is technically very difficult to synchronize the technical processes, regulations, standards of two plants that have developed along different trajectories", - says the interlocutor of NI, - "the reconfiguration of production can take up to six months, and no one has counted how much it will cost. In addition, no one fully understands the market's need for elevators. Yes, Western companies have left, but the enterprises remain, there are suppliers from Belarus, Turkey, China. How many elevators need to be produced, who will buy them, will there be so many houses being built to provide the holding with orders? All this is still just speculation and no specifics".

Now, instead of using the window when such giants as Otis and Kone have left the market, Russian elevator manufacturers risk getting bogged down in courts and corporate disputes.

This will lead to the fact that one of the key enterprises will finally die, and the construction market will lose a supplier of critical equipment.