Russia seizes assets of agricultural firm AgroTerra

By Staff
3 Min Read

Dive Brief:

  • Russia has seized assets of agricultural holdings company AgroTerra Group as part of a retaliation against “unfriendly” states amid heightened geopolitical tensions.

  • President Vladimir Putin signed a decree on Monday placing Dutch-registered firms AgroTerra Investments B.V. and AgroTerra Holdings B.V. under “temporary management” of Rosimushchestvo, Russia’s federal property management agency. 

  • The move follows similar asset seizures of Western companies such as multinational brewer Carlsberg and dairy giant Danone, which have moved to offload their operations in Russia.

Dive Insight:

More than 1,000 companies have curtailed their operations in Russia with many leaving the country in response to the Ukraine war, according to the Yale School of Management.

As geopolitical tensions continue, Russia is making it difficult for big brands to wind down or even leave the country. Putin signed an executive order in April 2023 allowing Russia to take over real estate, securities, property rights and other assets from foreign companies with ties to “unfriendly countries.” 

In March, Danone finally received approval to offload its business in Russia after starting the transfer process in 2022, resulting in a loss of 1.2 billion euros, or about $1.3 billion.

AgroTerra, founded in 2008, is a supplier and producer of commodities, seeds and value-added products to food processors. The company specializes in soybeans, wheat, sugar beet and other cash crops, according to its LinkedIn page. It is also considered to be one of the top 20 largest owners of agricultural land in Russia.

“As of now, the Company has not yet received any further details regarding the decree on the transfer of shares within the authorized capital of the AgroTerra Group to the temporary management of Rosimushchestvo,” a spokesperson told Agriculture Dive.

The company said it was operating as usual and that its primary focus was the ongoing sowing campaign, Reuters reported. The decree listed Dutch-registered firms AgroTerra Investments B.V. and AgroTerra Holdings B.V. as part owners of some of the assets.

NCH Capital, a U.S.-based firm that lists AgroTerra as one of its agribusinesses, did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Agriculture Dive.

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