Azeri millionaire closes Malta firms he set up in 2015

Azeri businessman Manuchehr Ahadpur Khangah has placed six holding companies he opened through auditors Nexia BT, into dissolution just nine months since setting them up

Manuchehr Ahadpur Khangah.
Manuchehr Ahadpur Khangah.

An Azeri businessman who set up six holding companies with Nexia BT in February 2015, has started the process of dissolving the companies.

Polo enthusiast Manuchehr Ahadpur Khangah, 62, filed dissolution papers in December 2015. Auditing firm Nexia BT is currently making the news for having set up offshore vehicles in Panama for energy minister Konrad Mizzi and the prime minister's chief of staff Keith Schembri.

The chairman of Az Group of Companies set up six different holding companies, all under a familiar musical nomenclature – the Bach, Beethoven, Mozart, Puccini, Verdi, and Vivaldi investment holding companies – falling under parent company Mulsanne Investments. All of them are registered in Malta.

MaltaToday has established so far that Vivaldi Investment will close with a €7,023 net loss, of which €4,263 is a shareholder’s loan.

Tehran-born Khangah graduated from the University of Newcastle Upon Tyne in the UK, specialising in highway and traffic engineering He has lived in Azerbaijan since 1993 and is currently chairman of the Az Group of Companies, which has interests in the food, plastics, wood, and construction industries.

In a leaked US cable published on Wikileaks, in which the US embassy in Baku profiled the most powerful families in Azerbaijan back in 2010, Khangah was said to be in business with the children of Minister of Emergency Situations Kamaladdin Heydarov.

The US cable claimed that Khangah was the CEO or “front man” of a substantial portion of the Heydarov family conglomerate.

In one example, Kamaladdin Heydarov’s two sons Nijat and Tale wanted to buy two Gulfstream jets, valued at $20 million each. Ownership of the Gulfstreams was to be shared between a Dubai-registered company Shams al Sahra, owned by the Heydarovs, and Ahadpur Khangah.

“Khangah was not previously known to the Embassy, but according to information from Gulfstream appears to be a citizen of both Iran and Azerbaijan (unclear if he also holds other passports). Purportedly as part of Patriot Act compliance, Gulfstream asked the Heydarovs for information that would confirm the lawful sources of their wealth.

“The Heydarovs provided Gulfstream an overview of their family holdings, and it appears they own more businesses than any other Azerbaijani family, including companies in food canning, construction materials, concrete, asphalt, chemicals, bricks, textiles, CD and DVD production, milk processing, tourism, gypsum materials, leather, agriculture, pianos, alcohol and spirits, juices, banking, insurance, and construction,” the US embassy cable read.