Tsvetan Vasilev Denies Report He Ran Bulgaria’s KTB as Ponzi Scheme
Tsvetan Vasilev, the main shareholder of Bulgaria’s collapsed Corporate Commercial Bank, has denied charges he ran the bank as a Ponzi scheme.
An ad hoc committee set up by Bulgaria’s Parliament to look into the collapse of the country’s fourth-largest lender last week released its conclusions, in which it said Vasilev had been running the bank as a Ponzi scheme which led to its insolvency.
Noting that the bank, known by its Bulgarian acronym KTB, has existed since the year 2000, Vasilev commented: “So far, I haven’t heard an unviable structure to have been able to survive so long.”
“During this period, the bank has increased its capital to BGN 650 M, up from BGN 11 M Levs, with over two-thirds of the capital increase being a capitalized profit,” Vasilev said on his personal website late on Sunday.
He also said that the participation of Oman’s State General Reserve Fund (SGRF) and Russia’s VTB Capital in the shareholding structure of KTB was yet another piece of evidence the bank had been run properly.
“Could a seriously thinking person assume that these institutions had invested in a Ponzi scheme?”, Vasilev asked.
SGRF, Oman's biggest sovereign wealth fund and KTB's second biggest shareholder, has launched legal action against Bulgariain European courts over the collapse of KTB, Reuters reported last week, citing an unnamed source at the fund. Bulgaria’s Finance Ministry said it had no information about registered arbitration cases against Bulgaria on the initiative of the SGRF, according to the newswire.
Vasilev has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing in previous statements, saying the bank had allegedly fallen victim to a politically-motivated plot to seize its assets.
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