Serbian media tycoon takes over Southampton football club

Eldar Dizdarevic in Sarajevo January 5, 2022

United Media founder Dragan Solak bought football club from Chinese real estate magnate Gao Jisheng in £100mn deal.

Kazakhstan gripped by protests as anger over fuel price hike sparks anti-government sentiment

bne IntelIiNews January 4, 2022

In largest city Almaty thousands clash with riot police. President says officials will meet to discuss protesters’ “socio-economic demands”.

Polish government on the ropes over Pegasus spyware scandal

Wojciech Kosc in Warsaw January 4, 2022

Radical rightwing government allegedly used Israeli Pegasus spyware to hack the phones of opposition figures.

Hungarian banks tell government they cannot support mortgage rate freeze

bne IntelliNews January 4, 2022

The government has fixed variable-rate home loans at October 2021 rates until at least the April elections.

Belarus’ opposition leader Tikhanovskaya calls on the people to hold firm in an emotional New Year’s address

bne IntelliNews January 3, 2022

Belarusian opposition leader Svetlana Tikhanovskaya told viewers that she was “angry” but sees “light in the darkness: you,” in an slick New Year’s address released on YouTube to see out a year of frustration and repression.

Kosovo faces worst energy crisis in a decade

Valentina Dimitrievska in Skopje January 3, 2022

Daily power cuts planned for the next 60 days to save electricity.

Estonian government under fire for booming trade with Belarus

bne IntelliNews January 3, 2022

Government says that companies brokering or transiting goods from Belarus to the foreign market through Estonia do not violate sanctions imposed on Lukashenko's regime.

Montenegro’s biggest industrial producer KAP shuts down after energy price hike

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia January 2, 2022

Rising electricity prices make aluminium smelter's production uneconomic and its owner was unable to reach an agreement with power company EPCG.

North Macedonia’s president gives mandate to SDSM’s new leader to form government

Valentina Dimitrievska in Skopje December 30, 2021

Dimitar Kovacevski's main challenge will be to find a solution with neighbouring Bulgaria to unblock North Macedonia's EU accession process.

Sources say Fillon nominated to Sibur board by TAIF shareholders

Theo Normanton in Moscow December 24, 2021

Sources say that the former French Prime Minister was nominated by shareholders from Sibur's former rival TAIF, with which it completed a mega merger in 2021.

HarperCollins settles with Abramovich Putin’s People book case, agrees to substantial corrections and to pay a donation to charity

Ben Aris in Berlin December 22, 2021

The British publisher HarperCollins has settled with Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich in a defamation case and has agreed to delete or change over 1,700 words in the book Putin’s People authored by veteran Russian reporter Catherine Belton,

NEO: Bonum continues investment spree with Russian coking coal

NEO December 22, 2021

As green approaches to metallurgy come under the spotlight, investment fund Bonum Capital buys 16% of Koks, Russia’s largest producer of merchant coke and among the world’s cleanest coking coal plants.

Usmanov expects “green technologies” to transform European industry

Theo Normanton in Moscow December 21, 2021

Russian billionaire Alisher Usmanov, whose fund owns 49% of steelmaker Metalloinvest, spoke about the likely significant impact of “green technologies” on Europe's metals industry.

Moscow has launched its 900th electric bus in time for the holidays

bne IntelliNews December 21, 2021

The 900th electric bus hits the streets of Moscow as the holiday season starts, suitably decked with festive lights.

Russian retail consolidation continues as Lenta buys e-grocer Utkonos

bne IntelliNews December 17, 2021

One of Russia's mid-cap food retailers, Lenta, has announced its intentions to acquire the Utkonos e-grocery service for RUB20bn ($270mn) to expand its online market share and acquire unique competences and loyal customer base.

Serbia suspends plans for Rio Tinto’s lithium mine

Eldar Dizdarevic in Sarajevo December 17, 2021

Plans to build huge mine that would have turned Serbia into Europe's top lithium producer on hold after mass protests.

Erdogan follows latest ‘unbelievable’ rate cut with 50% boost to Turkey’s minimum wage

bne IntelIiNews December 17, 2021

Analysts warn that amid lira crisis move to hike Turks’ earnings could add to rampant inflation. Market fears hyperinflation will take hold.

Romanian chemicals group Chimcomplex mulls taking over Rompetrol

Iulian Ernst in Bucharest December 16, 2021

Chemical holding outlines development plans including ambitions to take over Romania's biggest refinery Petromidia, owned by Rompetrol.

NEO: Avito becomes world’s most visited classified site

NEO December 16, 2021

Russia’s Avito topped Similarweb’s list of most visited classified advertisement sites for November 2021, in a sign that emerging markets are taking the lead in this fast-growing sector.

Navalny wins Sakharov prize, but European Parliament spells his name wrong

bne IntelliNews December 16, 2021

The European Parliament awarded jailed opposition figure Alexey Navalny with the prestigious Sakharov Prize for Freedom on December 15, but spelled both his name and the word “corruption” incorrectly on the certificate.