What can British advisers help a businessman?
Oleg Deripaska increasingly resorts to the services of British specialists. So the company of the ex-head of the Ministry of Finance of Great Britain George Osborne became a consultant to Rusal.
The British consulting company Robey Warshaw, behind which George Osborne, a lobbyist for the Tory party, has been collaborating with Rusal since the spring of this year.
The contradictory relationship of Oleg Deripaska with the British filed began in the early 2000s through the mediation of the heir to the Rothschilds Nathaniel and is not without scandals. The correspondent of The Moscow Post tried to understand the complexities of international relations of the oligarch.
The connections of the English ex-official significantly helped Robey Warshaw get a contract with one of the largest aluminum producers in the world. Mr. Osborne used his ties with Gregory Barker, chairman of the En + board of directors, to conclude a contract between Robey Warshaw and Rusal.
Barker and Osborne worked together in the government in 2010-2014.
Before moving to Robey Warshaw, Mr. Osborne headed one of the oldest British newspapers, the London Evening Standard, since 2017. The publication is part of the Evgeny Lebedev media company.
Deripaska, limited in action due to US sanctions, decided to use London to get out of Washington’s stop list.
Deripaska made a forced move in 2018 by transferring control over his assets through the boards of directors of Rusal and En + to US and UK citizens. Thus, he lifted US sanctions on En +, Rusal and Eurozbenergo. The entrepreneur was excruciatingly given a decrease in his share in the companies: he gave part of the shares of the parent En + to VTB, Glencore and the Free Cause charitable foundation, as a result, Oleg Deripaska’s share in the company decreased to 44.95%. He remains an «authorized citizen» of the United States and his voting rights are limited to 35%.
For his role in brokering the deal, Greg Parker received a $5.9 million «discretionary bonus» from En +.
The history of George Osborne’s relationship with Deripaska began much earlier and was accompanied by scandal. Back in 2008, the conservative stepped aboard the oligarch’s yacht and asked the Russian billionaire to donate 50 thousand pounds to the conservatives’ needs and recklessly almost violated British law: political parties are forbidden to receive contributions from foreigners.
Osborne persistently denied the fact of receiving money from the oligarch, insisting on the legality of his actions.
However, Osborne’s excuses did not embarrass Deripaska in any way and vice versa, gave enthusiasm and confidence in the right course to conquer America through Britain.
The billionaire also established far-reaching and mutually beneficial ties with the former EU commissioner, former British Minister for Business and Entrepreneurship Peter Mandelson, who was hit by a flurry of criticism of the «Puritan» press because of contacts with Russians. Mandelson showed steel endurance and flatly refused to resign due to contacts with a Russian businessman. According to him, this was a common communication between a politician and a businessman. Representatives of the European Union supported Mandelson as by the way, saying that the European Commissioner did not violate the law.
Both Osborne and Mandelson were turned into a whirlpool in 2008, after visiting the Deripaska yacht in the Ionian Sea, when the Russian oligarch rolled a feast around the world near the Rothschild barons’ estate on the island of Corfu.
Influential English gentlemen Deripaske was introduced by Nathaniel Rothschild, considered a friend of the head of Rusal.
True, then Osborne did Deripaska a «bearish service,» revealing information about Deripaska’s meeting with Mandelson.
Given that the confidential Mandelson-Deripaska were deliberately revealed, Rothschild Jr. played ahead and set the foot of the imprudent Osborne, given that Mandelson allegedly got on the yacht to Deripaska only because Rothschild did not have a free room for him in the villa.
Rothschild, who sponsors the Conservative Party, complained about Osborne’s actions to The Times in a letter leaking information to Osborne himself and his associate Andrew Feldman as executive director in the Tory party apparatus.
As it turned out, politicians «did not disdain» the money of the Russian oligarch and asked Deripaska to support the conservatives with finances. Moreover, Feldman allegedly proposed to «wash off» the money through one of the Russian-owned companies in the UK.
If the scandal with Osborne was stopped, then Mandelson had to make excuses for ties with Deripaska for a long time.
As it turned out, he confused the date of the acquaintance, and instead of the actual 2004, he «mistakenly» indicated his meetings with the head of Rusal in 2006 and 2007 at official events.
Deripaska’s cooperation with British party and financial lobbyists was updated against the backdrop of a coup in Guinea and a new wave of confrontation with Viktor Vekselberg, a minority shareholder of Sual Partners, who at the beginning of the month reacted violently to Rusal’s policy and demanded to return to payments: Rusal shareholders voted against dividends.
Stepping on the heels of Deripaska and Sber, to whom Rusal owed billions of dollars in debt. There is still no official reaction to the business proposal of the deputy chairman of the board of Sber Anatoly Popov, who unequivocally called on Deripaska to pay off the bank amid the astronomical increase in aluminum prices, which has been observed on the market since the beginning of September.
Rusal could direct part of the funds received for a stake in Norilsk Nickel under the buyback program to pay off the debt to Sberbank ($4.5 billion), said Sber Popov.
As The Moscow Post previously wrote, the coup in Guinea and the removal by the junta of the current president of the country, Alpha Conde, unexpectedly played into the hands of Deripaska’s business.
Guinea accounts for 45% of bauxite consumed by Rusal. Since the beginning of September, amid rising aluminum prices, Rusal shares have risen in price by 32%. Over the past three weeks, aluminum has risen in price by 15%. Aluminum shortage provoked an unprecedented increase in aluminum prices. Therefore, Popov’s appeal to Rusal is quite fair.
The complex of problems and the node of contradictions narrowing around Deripaska promises possible risks for his company, and probably to maintain the position of the largest aluminum producer Deripaska mobilized all the existing connections on different continents, which, apparently, went into operation to protect the «borders» of the financial empire of the «aluminum king.»