- A yacht linked to oligarch Roman Abramovich changed hands hours after Russia invaded Ukraine.
- Abramovich appears to have passed it on to his associate, David Davidovich, The Guardian reported.
- At 164 feet, the Aquamarine is modest compared to Abramovich’s 536-foot Eclipse and 460-foot Solaris.
On February 24, the day Russia invaded Ukraine, a $40.3 million superyacht named the Aquamarine changed hands, according to a investigation The Guardian published on Friday.
Based on public documents, Roman Abramovich transferred ownership of the Aquamarine to an associate, businessman David Davidovich, the outlet reported.
Forbes has called Davidovich “Abramovich’s much more discreet right-hand man.”
The Guardian has followed the apparent ownership swap of the yacht through two companies, MHC Jersey Ltd, which is registered in New Jersey, and an entity called Norma Investments, which is listed in the British Virgin Islands.
Abramovich was thought to be in charge of Norma Investments, but just hours after Russia attacked Ukraine, Davidovich became the owner, according to documents previously filed by The Wall Street Journal.
The Guardian reported that Norma Investments is the sole listed shareholder of MHC Jersey Ltd, according to New Jersey public records. MHC Jersey Ltd also owns the yacht Aquamarine, by MarineTraffic.
The Aquamarine is currently in dry dock at Vlissingen, a port in the Netherlands, and while Dutch authorities seized 14 yachts on Wednesday, officials declined to comment to The Guardian whether the Aquamarine was among them.
Compared to Abramovich’s megayachts, the Eclipse and Solaris, the Aquamarine is modest: she measures 164 feet. The Eclipse is 536 feet and the Solaris is 460 feet.
The $600 million Solaris and $700 million Eclipse are moored in Turkey, and two other yachts are in the Caribbean. All seem to be fleeing the sanctions.
The UK, EU and Canada have sanctioned Abramovich, but Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has asked the US not to sanction him, saying Abramovich could potentially be a peace negotiator, according to the Wall Street Journal . reported. He is said to have participated in prisoner exchanges and escape routes.
Davidovich told the Guardian in a statement that he could “confirm that I am the owner of MHC Jersey Ltd and the yacht Aquamarine”, as well as the majority owner of Norma Investments, and said he did not believe the Aquamarine was subject to sanctions.
Representatives for Abramovich told the Guardian he was not the ultimate beneficiary of MHC Jersey.
The Aquamarine is currently moored for repairs at Damen Shiprepair, where an unnamed source told the Guardian it was “generally understood to be Abramovich’s yacht”, the outlet reported.
The source added that the vessel entered Damen in November 2021 but no one other than its existing crew has worked there since March 10, when Abramovich was sanctioned by the UK.
In addition to his status as a Russian oligarch, Abramovich is known as the owner of Chelsea FC, the English Premier League football team, which he bought in 2003. Last month he announced his intention to sell the club despite the sanctions, Apparently for $2.5 billion, The New York Times reported.