The heirs of entrepreneur Andrei Trubnikov are suing the company Natura Siberica founded by him for control of its assets. At the same time the company is facing a multi-billion dollar lawsuit. All this can lead to the death of the business. Andrei Trubnikov has four heirs. As The Bell found out, all but one of them filed more than a dozen lawsuits; they felt that the company's trustee was acting against their interests. Whether Andrei Trubnikov left a will is unknown, but the entrepreneur himself has publicly said that he does not want to pass his fortune to his children. He had a prenuptial agreement with his widow Anastasia Trubnikova. Who can get Natura Siberica nature? And will the company survive the hereditary conflict?
Andrey Trubnikov invented the Natura Siberica brand back in 2008. It became the flagship of his cosmetics empire. Four years later the entrepreneur launched a retail network with the same name. By the middle of 2020 the business with all brands and international divisions was valued at 5-7 billion rubles. But over all these years Trubnikov never managed to get his own children interested in it, although his ex-wife and son were co-owners.
At the beginning of 2021, Trubnikov died, and that is when the heirs became interested in the fate of the asset. They thought that the trustee who changed some of the top managers was actually working against them and wanted to seize operational control of the company. However, the change of managers was a logical step, because they could steal some of the business, Natalia Butrina, the head of the legal department of UFG Wealth Management, notes. She says that so far the majority of the heirs, in fact, present a united front, but further on the chaos in the company may only increase.
"In addition to the current problems, where the heirs are simply trying to neutralize management, keep the assets intact, or somehow get control, another negative scenario is possible - suing each other. This can lead to paralysis of assets. Even when the disputes with the trustee are over, the heirs will face the problem that there is no longer a controlling interest," Butrina forecasts.
Natura Siberica's paralysis is particularly bad right now. The company needs to fight off the claims of structures allegedly connected with Oleg Deripaska, who demand more than 4 billion rubles for the burnt industrial zone, where the company was renting space.
Natura Siberica's vulnerable position makes it a good takeover target for a major player, and the size of the discount depends on whether the heirs manage to agree among themselves, continues Natalia Butrina: "The positive scenario is when a major player with the right position of heirs comes in and they agree on a fair price. But a negative scenario is possible: lawsuits and other problems that may arise will be related to this, when a major player in the market, which is interested in this asset, will just now knock down the price.
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