Bosses at the UK arm of Russian energy giant Gazprom have made a bid to buy it out, as sanctions against its parent company threaten to make it insolvent.
Manchester-based Gazprom Energy, which supplies more than a fifth of gas used by UK companies, has been left just days from needing a government bailout through special administration regime (SAR), according to Sky News’ Mark Kleinman.
The company supplies major customers including hospitals and local councils, McDonalds and Siemans, with some major firms now seeking alternative suppliers for fuel.
This comes after Britain issued a series of harsh sanctions against Russian firms with ties to President Vladimir Putin, including a ban on Russian oil by the end of 2022.
Yesterday, Boris Johnson convened leaders from the UK’s nuclear energy industry in a bid to reduce its reliance on natural gas.
When approached for comment, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) urged firms to assess their supply contracts carefully.
A BEIS spokesperson said: “We are aware that Gazprom Energy has a large presence in the non-domestic energy retail market. Gazprom’s retail business continues to trade in the UK and customers should exercise their own commercial judgement with regards to energy supply contracts they have in place at the moment.”
Gazprom, based in Saint Petersburg, recently had its multi-million pound sponsorship deal with UEFA, the governing body of football, cancelled.
Alexey Miller, chairman of its management committee, has also been hit with Western sanctions.