Kerimov Moves to Replace Uralkali CEO

Uralkali said Wednesday that billionaire Suleiman Kerimov is seeking to replace the company’s chief executive officer with an ally after gaining control of Russia’s second-largest potash producer last month.

Kerimov and his business partners called a board meeting for Aug. 4 on replacing CEO Denis Morozov with Pavel Grachev, a managing director at the billionaire’s Nafta Moskva investment company, the fertilizer maker said.

“Kerimov has ambitious plans for Uralkali and would like to work with somebody with whom he has already cooperated closely,” said Yelena Sakhnova, an analyst at VTB Capital. “Morozov was hired by the former controlling shareholder, Dmitry Rybolovlev.”  

Anton Averin, a spokesman for Nafta Moskva, declined to comment. Larissa Belyaeva, an Uralkali spokeswoman, also declined to comment.

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