Largest Financiers of politicians and their political parties
During the period of August 1 to September 11, the donations received by Georgian political parties and independent candidates totaled 770,146 GEL. According to the Monitoring of Political Finance section by the State Audit Office, the United National Movement received the largest donation of 345,476 GEL. In second place is European Georgia with 293,156 GEL and in third place is Salome Zurabishvili with 109,021 GEL donations. This includes financial and non-financial contributions as well as membership payments.
During the period of September 1 to September 30, political parties received a total of 930 012 GEL donations. During this period, UNM received the largest amount, followed by the independent presidential candidate Salome Zurabishvili with 332,245 GEL in donations and European Georgia in third place with 91 196 GEL. In September the Civil Platform New Georgia received 35,000 GEL in donations, the presidential independent candidate Besarion Tediashvili received 13,000 GEL in donations, followed by the Liberal Democrats Party with 9 700 GEL in donations, and the new political center, Girchi, with 4,600 GEL. The Free Georgia Party received 1,010 GEL in donations in September and National Forum received 350 GEL. Another independent candidate, Kakhaber Chichinadze, received 200 GEL in donations. As for the Georgian Dream Party only 20 GEL in donations has been recorded.
The single largest donation came to 60,000 GEL, first made to the United National Movement by Davit Kirkitadze, followed by a matching donation made by Irakli Kirkitadze.
Salome Zurabishvili received a 60,000 GEL donation three times – donated by Dimitri Adamia, Irakli Kapianidze, and Kakhaber Kobiavanov respectively.
The second largest single donation amounted to 54,999 GEL, donated to European Georgia by Akaki Kilasonia.
50,000 GEL donations are also not unusual for political subjects: this amount was donated to Salome Zurabishvili twice – once from Davit Topuridze and once from Vakhtang Laghidze. In addition, 30,000 GEL was donated to Zurabishvili by Temur Matsaberidze. The presidential candidate herself has also made a donation of the same amount to her own campaign.
The United National Movement received two donations of 30,000 GEL – once from a company Autohouse and once from Nika Melia.
The company Autohouse is not the only legal entity that has financially contributed to the presidential elections. For example, Free Georgia received 500 GEL worth of donations from the Financial Credit Service Centre (FCSC). However, the donation was a non-cash contribution. A 500 GEL non-cash contribution was made to European Georgia from Signal.
Although contributions from legal entities to the presidential campaigns were only made a few times, the individual contributions made to political parties were made by financiers often with large companies behind them. For example, the 60,000 donation made to Zurabishvili was by Archi Tower Director Irakli Kapianidze. In 2016 He also donated 30,000 GEL to the Georgian Dream Party. One of the other largest contributors to Zurabishvili’s campaign is Kakhaber Kobaivanov, the director and 100% shareholder of Eurasia Development Group Ltd. He is also the director of Archi Gldani LTD, a company that also has Irakli Kapianidze as its director.
Akaki Kilasonia has been a contributor to the European Georgia Party for two years running and is a partner of Mukhiani Ltd.
Davit Topuridze, who donated 50,000 GEL to the Salome Zurabishvili campaign, is an owner and a director of several companies, among which are Tiflis Ltd, which is 100% under his ownership. In 2014 he was the director of JSC Akura and Gruzwinprom. Vakhtang Laghidze, who donated 30,000 GEL to Zurabishvili, is the director of Coca-Cola Bottlers Georgia.