Manatos & Manatos, a public affairs lobbying firm, recently filed paperwork with the United States Department of Justice showing their firm has been hired by VTB Capital, Inc., a subsidiary of VTB Group, a global provider of financial services and one of the two largest banks in Russia – and over 60 percent owned by the Russian government.
According to the FARA registration, M&M will provide “lobbying Congressional and/or Executive Branch actions that affect the imposition of the U.S. sanctions on Russian-affiliated banks.” The base fee they will receive is $17,500 per month plus the costs of any work they provide for VTB, which Manatos has represented previously – beginning in April 2015.
Part of what M&M will provide includes “Arranging meetings between VTB Group officials and U.S. policymakers, drafting language for use in correspondence, and monitoring statements and policy related to the imposition of sanctions.”
VTB Group issued an email in 2015 when they originally signed with M&M that, “The granting of such contracts is exclusively linked to the promotion of VTB Group’s business interests in the U.S.” VTB and other Russian-supported global banks hope to remain off the foreign sanctions list.
Manatos & Manatos are prominent lobbyists in Washington D.C. The CEO/President, Andy Mantos, and Mike (Sr. VP) are Greek Orthodox brothers hailing from DC and have well-established connections in the U.S. Congress.
Their website says, “Manatos & Manatos offers clients a comprehensive range of government relations services tailored to meet their unique needs. Through our many decades of experience in Washington, M&M has developed extraordinary credibility with policymakers from both parties at the highest levels of the Legislative and Executive Branches.”