The arrival of Yakoub Zakriev, 32, at the head of the Russian subsidiary of Danone was notified in the Spark-Interfax database, which lists the main legal information of companies in Russia.
On Telegram, Chechen Information Minister Akhmed Dudayev confirmed on Tuesday evening that Mr. Zakriev, until then Chechen Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Agriculture, was “appointed general manager of Danone Russia”.
A graduate of Moscow State University, Yakoub Zakriev was notably mayor of Grozny, the capital of this Russian republic in the Caucasus, between 2018 and the beginning of 2020. Between February and November 2020, he was the head of the administration of Ramzan Kadyrov, then was appointed Minister of Agriculture.
He is the nephew of Mr. Kadyrov, an unwavering supporter of Vladimir Putin and his military offensive in Ukraine, where many Chechen fighters are engaged.
His appointment as managing director of the Russian subsidiary of Danone, a global agrifood juggernaut, comes three days after the publication of a decree signed by Vladimir Putin formalizing the seizure by the Russian state of the assets of the French group, as well as those from the Danish brewery Carlsberg.
Asked by AFP, Danone did not wish to comment on this appointment.
According to a source familiar with the matter, the French agrifood giant was looking for a buyer corresponding to its “ethical criteria” to preserve its model, and was about to announce a sale when the Russian State announced the seizure. of its assets.
According to the same source, meetings are held “every day” with Danone’s Russian team to ensure their safety.
According to the economic daily Kommersant, the Baltika company, owned by Carlsberg, has also appointed a new director: Taïmouraz Bolloev, founder and historical figure of this Russian brewery which he had managed for the first time until 2004.
In a press release published on Wednesday, the Danish management of Carlsberg denounced “a change at the head of Baltika (…) carried out without the knowledge or without the approval of the group”.
Since the offensive in Ukraine on February 24, 2022 and the first economic sanctions decreed by the West, many multinationals have left Russia and others have suspended their activities there, in the oil, automobile or even luxury.