According to Forbes.ua, Maks Krippa now owns NAVI, GGBET, and Vulcan Casino.
Today, Forbes.ua has released a rather interesting article revealing the details of an undisclosed deal for the sale of one of the world's largest organizations, Natus Vincere. The authors claim that the agreement was carried out behind curtains intentionally to hide the new owner's connections with the gambling and betting business.
We've translated the article's main thesis below.
Oleksandr Kokhanovskyi founded NAVI and owned it until recently. In 2019, he entered the top 5 most influential people of the CIS esports according to Forbes Russia.
In Ukraine, through a legal entity in the British Virgin Islands, from the moment of registration in 2018, Kokhanovskyi owned NAVY U.E. LLC. However, on July 12, 2022, NAVI changed the ultimate beneficial owner to Ukrainian citizen Maksym Krippa, as evidenced by the data of the YouControl analytical system.
Two top managers of esports organizations told Forbes.ua anonymously that the deal took place back in 2020. A former employee of Krippa's orbiting company also anonymously told Forbes that he has long been the owner of this esports team. "I do not make any decisions at NAVI. Ask Zhenya [Zolotaryov]," Oleksandr Kokhanovsky answered Forbes' request.
Who is Maksym Krippa?
"His passion is volcanoes, and in Russia, volcanoes are both real fiery monsters and innocent mud landscapes, which are located in Kamchatka," reads one of the articles published by Google on the request of "Maks Krippa Volcano" in Russian. Why does the "leading volcanologist" have an esports team?
GGbet acquired NAVI, say Forbes' sources. From 2017 to 2020, the betting operator was a sponsor of NAVI. In 2020, NAVI changed its title partner to 1xBet and returned to GGBet a year later. "If you are a long-time sponsor, why sponsor something you can buy," says a top manager of an esports organization. "They deliberately sold the title sponsorship to someone else in 2020 (1xBet. - Forbes) to pretend that they are not involved with GGBet."
The relationship of NAVI and GGbet
Both NAVI and GGbet have legal entities in Cyprus. The official website NaVi.gg is managed by Cypriot Natus Vincere Esport CY. It also owns three esports team trademarks registered in 2020. For 2019 and 2020, the company's revenue amounted to €9.06 million, and the net profit was only €8,986, according to audited reports.
From the moment of registration in May 2019, the list of the company's directors and shareholders did not change. In addition to the Ukrainian LLC, Yevhen Zolotaryov also manages the Cypriot NAVI. Another executive, Cypriot Iliana Sakki (ΗΛΙΑΝΑ ΣΑΚΚΗ), 63, operates another 30 Cypriot companies. The third director is a citizen of the Netherlands, Jan Snijders, 52, who owns all the shares of Natus Vincere Esport CY. In addition, he is connected with ten more Cypriot legal entities.
The GG.bet site is managed by Brivio Ltd, registered on November 22, 2012, in Cyprus. It owns two GGBet trademarks registered in the USA and one more in Europe. By 2020, Brivio was unprofitable, losing €445,583. In 2020, the company suddenly earned €14.7 million. Curacao-based company Invicta Networks N.V. owns Brivio and provides all license services. Both companies also offer services under the Vulkan Vegas brand.
Natus Vincere Esport CY and Brivio are not directly related. They are served by the same company: One World. Its website says it is "one of the leaders in Cyprus in corporate and consulting services." Both have the same contacts for correspondence, handled by another Cypriot consultancy, Pandaserve Ltd. The auditor is also joint, Cypriot Priamus Audit Ltd.
This is where the Forbes.ua article ends.
There's only one question we have:
Valve, what do you think of it?
Cover image credit: NAVI.