Bulgartabac may change hands

BT Invest, majority owner of Bulgartabac, is a takeover target of investors operating through a company registered in Liechtenstein, said the Austrian business journal WirtschaftsBlatt. Livero-Establishments received a green light from Bulgarian competition authorities to acquire Austria-based BT Invest, which is a subsidiary of state-owned VTB bank of Russia, according to WirtschaftsBlatt.

Speculation in Russian and Bulgarian media on who is behind the alleged deal centres on Tsvetan Vasilev, said to be one of Bulgaria’s richest men, and Delyan Peevski, a controversial media mogul and former legislator, WirtschaftsBlatt said. Peevski was named national security chief by the current Bulgarian government, but resigned after public protests, said WirtschaftsBlatt.

Media accounts cited by the Austrian publication also claim the current takeover of BT Invest was agreed in 2011, when BT paid USD 100 million (EUR 73 million) for nearly 80 per cent of the former state monopoly Bulgartabac. 

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