Exclusive: VTB Capital to sue ex-chief Atanas Bostandjiev for setting up rival Gemcorp

Tim Wallace
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Former VTB Capital boss Atanas Bostandjiev
Investment firm VTB Capital is suing its former international chief executive, City A.M. understands, claiming he broke the terms of his contract by setting up a rival within weeks of leaving his job.

Ex-Goldman Sachs partner Atanas Bostandjiev headed up VTB Capital’s global operations for more than three years, before leaving the executive position in July 2014.

In September, he set up Gemcorp, a fund with $500m (£319m) to invest primarily in emerging markets.

VTB claims he is breaking a non-compete clause in his contract by setting up the rival business so quickly.

His ex-employer is arguing that Bostandjiev is in breach of terms stopping him from trying to hire VTB Capital’s staff.

He is also accused of trying to poach clients from the bank, in breach of a clause in the contract that prohibited such activities for a period of several months after his departure.

And VTB’s action also claims there is a possibility the ex-international boss could be breaking rules on the use of confidential information.

It wants Bostandjiev to pull out of the investment market until those clauses expire and is seeking to cancel unvested share options, which Bostandjiev had acquired before he left the business.

“Mr Bostandjiev’s contractual obligations could not be clearer, and he is in breach of them,” said a source close to VTB Capital.

A spokesperson for Bostandjiev’s new business Gemcorp declined to comment on VTB Capital’s legal action.

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