Tag Archive for Business

Curbs on Foreign Ownership Will Gut Russia’s Media

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Delphine d’Amora – September 28, 2014) An era in Russian media ended Friday as parliament passed a law limiting foreign ownership in domestic media assets at 20 percent, hitting some of the world’s largest media companies and turning back the clock on an industry that has thrived on foreign brands

Interfax: Sanctions against Russia already affecting production of tight reserves, could impact shelf

Oil Worker file photo

KHANTY-MANSIISK. Sept 10 (Interfax) – The sanctions imposed by the EU and U.S. against Russia are already affecting the production of tight reserves, Russian Natural Resources Minister Sergei Donskoi said at a briefing in Khanty-Mansiisk. “The sanctions, first due to technology, have not yet impacted [the country's economy], but are already affecting the production of

Interfax: State obligation is to defend business from illegitimate actions of foreign countries, companies – Medvedev

File Photo of Dmitry Medvedev Before Gold Flag with Elaborate Design

GORKI. Sept 9 (Interfax) – The state will continue to provide support to Russian business amid the Western sanctions, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said during a meeting with NOVATEK (MOEX: NVTK) CEO Leonid Mikhelson. “You can have no doubt that in the face of such unfair actions the state has always supported and will

Consumers Stay Away From Moscow’s Malls as Sanctions Deepen Russia’s Slump

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – September 9, 2014) Nearly 25 percent fewer people visited Moscow’s malls in the week leading up the start of the school year than in the same period of 2013, a survey said, indicating that Western sanctions and an economic slowdown are hitting Russian consumer demand. A report by consumer market

Interfax: Rosstat affirms 0.8% Q2 Russian GDP growth estimate

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

MOSCOW. Sept 8 (Interfax) – The Federal State Statistics Service (Rosstat) has affirmed its preliminary estimate of 0.8% year-on-year GDP growth for the second quarter of 2014, the agency said. GDP was 17.697 trillion rubles in current prices in Q2. Rosstat published its preliminary estimate for Q2 in the middle of August. The Russian Economic

RIA Novosti: Economy Minister Confirms Russian Plans to Privatize 19.5% in Rosneft Oil Company in 2015

File Photo Rosneft and Russian Flags Next to Rosneft Banner

MOSCOW, August 28 (RIA Novosti) – The Russian government is to go ahead with plans to privatize a 19.5 percent stake in oil major Rosneft in 2015, likely in two stages, Russian Economic Development Minister Alexei Ulyukayev said Thursday. “The [government] plan is being upheld and preliminary operations have already begun. We are talking about

Million-Man Army of Programmers Won’t Free Russia From Western Software

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Delphine d’Amora – August 20, 2014) Foreign software has become the latest target of Russian officials’ clamorous calls for self-sufficiency, with plans to swiftly replace all foreign imports and triple the number of Russian programmers heralding a crusade that analysts consider misguided and hopelessly optimistic. “We stand for complete sovereignty

Sanctions Would Ground Russia’s Major Airlines

File Photo of Airplane Approaching Runway About to Land

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Alexander Panin – August 7, 2014) The grounding this week of Russia’s low-cost airline, Dobrolyot, by European Union sanctions has exposed the vulnerability of Russia’s airline industry, which relies on aircraft leased from abroad that can be withdrawn at the push of a pen in Brussels or Washington. Russian airlines

Business Mood Brightens, But Won’t Save Russian Economy, Study Finds

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Delphine d’Amora – July 16, 2014) Economic sentiment among Russian businesses improved in the second quarter, but the effect was largely seasonal and shot through with troubling long-term trends, a study published by the Higher School of Economics found. As the mood in retail and the services industry brightened –

McDonald’s to Open for First Time in 30 Russian Cities

File Photo of Russian McDbnald's Crew with U.S. Diplomat

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – July 2, 2014) McDonald’s plans to open 70 restaurants in 30 Russian cities by the end of this year, significantly expanding its reach into cities that were never home to the fast food empire before, McDonald’s development director in Russia told ITAR-Tass on Tuesday. “We’ll have restaurants in Siberia, in the

Follow the Money to Putin Inc. to See Why U.S. Struggles With Russia


(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Alan Katz, Jesse Drucker, Irina Reznik – June 25, 2014) To see why U.S. economic sanctions against Russia are likely to have limited impact, follow the spending of a small Delaware-incorporated, Nasdaq-traded television company named CTC Media Inc. (CTCM) While CTC Media has a market capitalization of just $1.7 billion, it’s

U.S. Business Groups to Run Ads Attacking Fresh Russia Sanctions

Empty Boardroom

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Anna Dolgov – June 26, 2014) Two main business lobbies in the U.S. plan to publicly challenge White House foreign policy regarding Russia by taking out advertisements in the nation’s top three newspapers to warn that imposing additional sanctions against Moscow will only harm U.S interests. The U.S. Chamber of

Russia has largest share of female top managers

Empty Boardroom

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – June 20, 2014) In Soviet times you knew when something was about to be fixed when the ladies with the white scarves on the heads turned up with their toolboxes and buckets. One of the real successes of communism was to elevate the role of women in the work

RIA Novosti: Russia to Contest West’s Unilateral Economic Sanctions in WTO

WTO Logo

ST. PETERSBURG, June 20 (RIA Novosti) – Moscow intends to refer the issue of unilateral economic sanctions imposed on Russia by the West to the World Trade Organization, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said Friday. “When the United States imposed on Russia sanctions that create negative consequences for foreign trade, we decided to challenge them

Corporate bondholders fret as oligarchs suffer under Ukraine crisis

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – Nick Kochan in London – June 20,2014) Ukraine’s security crisis is hitting bond investors in some of the country’s largest companies. A combination of the deteriorating economic situation, falling currency, increased Russian import duties on Ukrainian goods and rising gas prices has meant big local firms are struggling to

RIA Novosti: Legal Disputes Between Russia, Ukraine Better Than Force – Medvedev

Map of Western CIS/FSU and European Environs

ST. PETERSBURG, June 20 (RIA Novosti) – Many legal disputes are expected to arise between Russian and Ukrainian companies, but arbitration processes are better than tyranny and the use of force, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said during a speech at the International Legal Forum in St. Petersburg Friday. “In the near future, there will

INTERVIEW: Andrei Sharonov – sweating the chernovniki

Skolkovo File Photo

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – Ben Aris in Moscow – June 17 2014) Summer has finally come to Moscow and the main hall in the Red October chocolate factory that sits on the River Moskva across from the Kremlin is buzzing with young workers flapping about in flip-flops or hunkered over computers writing code.

Russian opposition media unite to go public

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Alexei Lossan, special to RBTH – June 12, 2014) Independent news organizations including oppositional television channel Dozhd TV and the Slon and Bolshoi Gorod media outlets are to be brought into one media group and floated on the Moscow stock market. The IPO will be the first by

Russian Millionaires Up By 18.5 Percent, Report Shows

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – June 10, 2014) The number of households whose wealth exceeds $1 million in Russia has grown by 18,5 percent in 2013, reaching 213,000 last year, the Boston Consulting Group said in a report. Russia thereby maintained the position it held in 2012, ranking 13th worldwide in terms of the number

Five Insider Stories From Russia’s Fledgling Start-Up Market

Empty Boardroom

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Alexander Panin – June 9, 2014) Start-ups, business angels and venture funds – these terms have become part of the Russian language, although just a few years back they were almost completely absent from the local dialect. High-tech business in Russia is expanding rapidly and being part of it is

Death Be Not Proud – Be Profitable: Moscow’s Funeral Business

Aerial View of Moscow From Beyond Stadium, file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Allison Quinn- June 5, 2014) Your beloved mother has died, leaving you in a state of grief just short of catatonic. Who do you call? Many Muscovites will tell you it was not really who you call that matters – it was who the police, the dispatcher or the medics

Sechin Sues Forbes for ‘Highest-Paid Executive’ Rating

Igor Sechin file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – May 28, 2014) Rosneft head Igor Sechin has filed a lawsuit against journalists and publishers of the Russian edition of Forbes and Komsomolskaya Pravda for an article he says threatens to damage his business reputation. The lawsuit, filed on May 15, demands that the journalists and publishers behind a November

RIA Novosti: Nestle, Mars Could Buy Poroshenko’s Candy Company for $1.5 Bln

Ukraine Map and Flag

MOSCOW, May 28 (RIA Novosti) – Food giants Mars and Nestle have been tipped as favorites to buy Ukraine’s leading chocolate firm Roshen, currently owned by likely president-elect Petro Poroshenko, for as much as $1.5 billion. The candy-maker-turned-politician earlier vowed to sell his biggest asset if elected president, and summoned investment advisors and bankers to

Interfax: Visa, MasterCard to continue operating in Russia – Siluanov

File Photo of Stack of Credit Cards, adapted from image at fdic.gov

(Interfax – May 20, 2014) The payment systems Visa and MasterCard will continue operating in Russia, Finance Minister Anton Siluanov told Interfax on Tuesday. “We can’t abandon these systems since over 90 percent of those who use payment systems work with them,” he said. He did not say how the problem would be resolved with

Foreign affair: Which brands have captured the hearts of Russians?

File Photo of Russian McDbnald's Crew with U.S. Diplomat

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – May 9, 2014) For the majority of Russian citizens, international brands are a must: As far as cars are concerned they prefer the Korean Hyundai or KIA, but when it comes to phones they opt for Samsung. Muscovites, unlike the rest of Russia, prefer Apple and Volkswagen products.

U.S. CEOs Shun St. Petersburg Forum But Send Their Deputies

File Photo of St. Petersburg Economy Forum Outdoor Banners and Building Facade

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Alexander Panin – May 8, 2014) Despite the White House’s calls for major firms to boycott the Saint Petersburg International Economic Forum, Russian officials said Wednesday that the forum would go on as U.S. CEOs bow out but send their deputies. The most prominent international economic meeting in Russia, chaired

Russia Beyond the Headlines: Counting the cost: How much did Russia spend and earn in Sochi?

File Photo of Man Placing Stack of Large Bills into Inside Pocket of Suitcoat

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Maria Karnaukh, special to RBTH – May 2, 2014) The 2014 Winter Olympics have already gone down in history as the most expensive Olympics ever, but now they promise to set another record in terms of profits generated by the organizers. The funds from sponsors alone will bring

Exxon’s $900 Billion Arctic Prize at Risk After Ukraine

Arctic Satellite Image and Map

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Stephen Bierman – April 29, 2014) Exxon Mobil (XOM) Corp.’s dream of drilling in the Russian Arctic may risk running aground on the politics of Ukraine. The company plans to start drilling in August in the Arctic’s remote Kara Sea — the centerpiece of Exxon’s global alliance with Russian state-controlled OAO

Yandex reacts to Putin comments about foreign influence as share price falls

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Vsevolod Pulya, RBTH – April 28, 2014) The Russian search engine was actually registered in the Netherlands and received its first investments from foreign investors. Nevertheless, it believes that this is “common practice for any internet startup.” Russian search engine Yandex has responded to comments by Russian President

RIA Novosti: Western Sanctions Unlikely to Damage Business Relations

Ukraine Map and Flag

MOSCOW, April 29 (RIA Novosti), Daria Chernyshova – Western sanctions against Moscow are unlikely to disrupt existing business ties with Russia, Renaissance Capital economist Oleg Kouzmin told RIA Novosti. “We do not think that sanctions would damage the existing business relations with Russia and its trading partners,” Kouzmin said. “Probably they may become an additional

Russian Billions Scattered Abroad Show Trail to Putin Circle

File Photo of Man Placing Stack of Large Bills into Inside Pocket of Suitcoat

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Henry Meyer, Irina Reznik – April 28, 2014) Outside a Moscow stadium one night in 2006, deputy central bank chief Andrei Kozlov was walking to his car after playing soccer when two men opened fire, pumping bullets into his head and neck and killing his driver. Days before the murders, the

Big Foreign Business Turns Blind Eye to Ukraine Sanctions

Truck at Russian Border Crossing

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Peter Hobson – ALABUGA, Tatarstan, April 28, 2014) As Western politicians huffed and puffed about slapping additional sanctions on Russia, captains of big global business in the country showed no jitters as they met with top Russian officials Friday. Moreover, the only person to mention Russia’s clash with the West

Interfax: Foreign investors not put off by Western sanctions – Russian deputy PM

Igor Shuvalov file photo

(Interfax – Vladivostok, April 26, 2014) Many foreign investors that have long been working in Russia are not planning to leave the country and intend to make new investments in the Russian Federation despite Western sanctions, First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov has said. “These are investors who have been working in Russia for many

U.S. sanctions may spur economy reforms in Russia – business ombudsman

Boris Titov file photo

(Interfax – April 15, 2014) New U.S. sanctions against Russia may impact the global economy but may in the end stimulate economic reforms in Russia, businessmen’s rights commissioner Boris Titov said. “Of course, we would like to avoid sanctions. Money loves tranquility that is why the economy can develop only when international relations in the

Most Russians Support McDonald’s Closures, Poll Says

File Photo of Russian McDbnald's Crew with U.S. Diplomat

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – April 15, 2014) Liberal Democrat Party leader Vladimir Zhirinovsky’s call to close all McDonald’s restaurants in Russia received a lot of media attention, and a recent poll shows that most Russians would be glad to see the back of the fast food chain. Sixty-two percent of respondents support the closure

Major Companies Boost Corruption Fight With Help of New Law

Cropped File Photo of Two Men in Business Suits Shaking Hands and Passing Cash

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Delphine d’Amora – April 11, 2014) Large companies in Russia are taking vigorous steps against corruption under the threat of prosecution abroad, even as the domestic legal system veers between stern threats and erratic enforcement. The issue came to a head Wednesday as multinational IT company Hewlett-Packard’s Russian subsidiary pleaded

Burger King Denies Plans to Expand Into Crimea

Ukraine Map and Flag

  (Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – April 11, 2014) Burger King Worldwide reached out Thursday to quash reports that the fast food chain’s Russian franchise operator would expand to Crimea, which Russia recently annexed from Ukraine. On Wednesday, Burger King Russia CEO Dmitry Medovy told news agency Itar Tass: “We are planning to open in

Burger King Expands Into Crimea After McDonald’s Exit

File Photo of Russian McDbnald's Crew with U.S. Diplomat

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Peter Hobson – April 10, 2014) U.S. fast food giant Burger King plans to expand its chain into Crimea, filling the vacuum left when McDonald’s pulled out of the peninsula last Friday, citing unspecified supply issues. Burger King currently has no outlets in Crimea, which has been at the center

RIA Novosti: Capital Outflow from Russia Due to Ruble Rate, Not Crimea

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

BERLIN, April 10 (RIA Novosti) – The outflow of capital from Russia is not tied to events in Ukraine, but to fluctuations in the exchange rate of the ruble, Russian First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov said Thursday. “The outflow of capital is not mainly tied to Crimea, the outflow, of course, is connected with

German Companies Remain Supportive of South Stream Gas Pipe

Gas Flame file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Alexander Panin – April 7, 2014) While Russia’s standoff with the West over Ukraine may have caused Italian energy group Eni to distance itself from the huge South Stream gas pipeline project linking Russia to Central Europe, partners from Germany, which is highly dependent on Russian gas, have stayed faithful.

Housing and High Wages Will Stop Russian ‘Brain Drain’ – Russian Official

Artist's Conception of Nanotechnology Components

MOSCOW, April 2 (RIA Novosti) – New housing incentives and high wages will help prevent young Russian scientists from leaving the country, a Russian official said Wednesday during a meeting of young scientists in Siberia. “I think that we should create better conditions so that our young scientists are motivated to build their career here

Sex, lies, intrigue and everything you wanted to know about Russian corporate culture

Empty Boardroom

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Dan Pototsky, RBTH – March 31, 2014) RBTH has collected data from the largest Russian recruiting companies, spoken with employees of a range of corporations with different outlooks and made a list of the main distinctions of Russian corporate culture. Note on Russian office culture: The idea that

Russia to Privatize Additional 431 Companies Through 2016

Empty Boardroom

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – April 1, 2014) The Cabinet approved a plan to privatize an additional 431 companies through 2016, according to a document published on the government’s website Monday. About 20 percent of Novorossiysk Commercial Sea Port, the Russian Lottery, and multiple scientific-research, construction, and agricultural facilities are up for sale, in addition

Moscow restaurants impose “entry ban” on Obama

File Photo of Barack Obama Sitting at Desk with Mike McFaul Standing Next to Him Facing Him

MOSCOW. March 22 (Interfax) – Moscow restaurants are introducing sanctions against U.S. President Barack Obama. Notices saying an “entry ban” has been imposed on Obama have been put up at the entrances to Dolma restaurants in central Moscow, an Interfax correspondent reported. The manager of a Dolma restaurant, Lasha Churgulia, said that, “the ban only

TRANSCRIPT: Putin at Congress of the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs

File Photo of Vladimir Putin at Valdai Club 2013 Meeting, Adapted from Screenshot of Valdai Club Video at youtube.com

(Kremlin.ru – March 20, 2014) Vladimir Putin took part in the annual congress of the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs. The topics on the congress’ agenda include de-offshorisation of the economy, making business more transparent, enhancing labour productivity, improving labour legislation, and creating a better investment climate. During the congress, representatives from the Agency

Navalny Proposes Sanctions List to the West

Alexei Navalny file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Christopher Brennan – March 20, 2014) Opposition leader Alexei Navalny, currently under house arrest in connection with a criminal case against him, has written an op-ed for the New York Times in which he calls for sanctions on officials and businessmen connected to President Vladimir Putin. Saying that previous U.S.

U.S. Threatens Sanctions Against Politically Connected Tycoons

File Photo of Man Placing Stack of Large Bills into Inside Pocket of Suitcoat

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Anatoly Medetsky – March 20, 2014) The White House has thrown some light on who may be next in line to feel U.S. wrath over Crimea’s breakaway from Ukraine: businesspeople close to the Russian government. White House spokesman Jay Carney said the U.S. will add bite to its current sanctions

Intellectual Property Rights Case Load Overwhelming Fledgling Court

Map of Russia

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Delphine d’Amora – March 12, 2014) Overworked and understaffed, Russia’s fledgling Intellectual Property Rights Court is watching nervously as its case load continues to climb. “Compared to analogous courts in Europe, we have a very high case load … and an increase in workload leads to the risk of a

Politics trumps & thumps economics

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – Chris Weafer, Macro-Advisory – March 11, 2014) “Sanctions and boycotts would be tied to serious political dialogue” Daw Aung San Suu Kyi We have cut our growth forecast to 1% for 2014, and revised some other macro forecasts partly because of the uncertainty and disruption caused by the Ukraine

Investigative Committee to Crack Down on Corruption During Coming Privatization

Empty Boardroom

(RIA Novosti – February 27, 2014) The head of the powerful Investigative Committee said Thursday that preventing corruption during a planned privatization of state assets will be a top priority for his agency this year. The government recently announced plans for an ambitious three-year program running up to 2016 to privatize a wide array of

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