Gramercy launches claims against Ukrainian oligarch Oleg Bakhmatyuk and US associate Nicholas Piazza over asset transfers

·2 min read

GREENWICH, Conn., Dec. 8, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Gramercy Funds Management LLC, the U.S. emerging markets investment firm, yesterday filed a complaint in U.S. federal court under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act against Oleg Bakhmatyuk, the founder and majority shareholder of one of Ukraine's largest agricultural conglomerates, UkrLandFarming (ULF), and Wyoming businessman, Nicholas Piazza. Gramercy is one of the largest investors in ULF.

In the U.S. action, Gramercy alleges there was a "complex, multi-faceted scheme" designed to maintain control over ULF and its subsidiary Avangardco IPL (AVG) and to interfere with Gramercy's ability to recover its investment.

In addition to claims under RICO, the U.S. complaint includes claims for fraud, tortious interference, aiding and abetting and civil conspiracy, and seeks, inter alia, treble damages under RICO.

Gramercy has also commenced a separate proceeding in Cyprus regarding transfers of material assets from ULF Group to a Cypriot entity owned and controlled by Bakhmatyuk. The Cyprus action seeks a worldwide freezing order on Mr. Bakhmatyuk's assets. Mr. Bakhmatyuk and others have already appeared in court through counsel to defend the Cyprus action. A further hearing on the freezing order application is currently scheduled to take place on January 28, 2022.

Commenting, Gramercy's founder and Chief Investment Officer, Robert Koenigsberger, said: "On behalf of our investors, Gramercy devoted substantial time and resources to attempting to bring Mr. Bakhmatyuk to the table in good faith to negotiate a comprehensive restructuring of the Company's capital structure in accordance with international standards. If a fair deal cannot be reached, Gramercy is left with no choice but to resort to litigation given that it has uncovered transfers of more than a billion dollars of Company assets that were not disclosed, and which have caused Gramercy's investors substantial losses."

Note to editors: Gramercy is a dedicated emerging markets investment manager based in Greenwich, Connecticut with offices in London and Buenos Aires with assets of approximately $5 billion under management. ULF Group is among Ukraine's largest agricultural companies and owns the largest egg-producing business in Europe.

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SOURCE Gramercy Funds Management LLC

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