Yandex sets up NGO to hold its golden share, changes governance to reassure government and investors

Ben Aris in Berlin November 18, 2019

Russian internet giant and one of Europe’s largest tech companies Yandex has come to an agreement with the Russian authorities to amend its governance and give an NGO with public participation control over its “golden share” with veto powers.

Veteran Russian tour operator Intourist could IPO

bne IntelliNews November 18, 2019

Russia’s oldest and largest tour operator Intourist is planning an IPO, after it will be bought from troubled Thomas Cook by the owner of Anex Tour major Neşet Koçkar, Reuters reported on November 14 citing an announcement by Intourist.

Gazprom extends its lead in the King of the castle race

Ben Aris in Berlin November 16, 2019

State-owned gas company Gazprom extended its lead over rival state-owned banking giant Sberbank in the race to be Russia’s most valuable company, after its market capitalisation stepped up by over $10bn in November to make the company worth $93bn.

Russia's billionaire car salesman, owner of Rolf to sell up

bne IntelliNews November 15, 2019

The owners of the largest car dealer in Russia Rolf are looking for buyers for 100% in the company, Vedomosti daily reported on November 14 citing the founder of the dealer Sergei Petrov.

MOEX and Institutional Investor name Russia’s top IR teams and people

bne IntelliNews November 14, 2019

In a much sought-after title within the investment banking world, the US magazine Institutional Investor, together with Moscow Exchange, have presented their best investor relations professionals in Russia awards.

From Russia to Ireland: Uralchem’s long fight for its investments

bne IntelliNews November 14, 2019

Leading Russian fertiliser producer Uralchem is in a nasty corporate conflict involving one of Russia’s largest chemical plants, Togliattiazot, and its former management that has been running years

Russia’s economic growth accelerated to 1.7% in 3Q19 after a very slow first half of the year

bne IntelliNews November 14, 2019

Russia’s State Statistics Service published preliminary GDP estimates for 3Q19 that posted a 1.7% y/y growth in the quarter, up from 0.9% y/y in 2Q19 and only 0.5% in the first quarter.

Ukraine on course to smash its 2019 grain harvest record, remain world’s biggest grain exporter

Ben Aris in Berlin November 13, 2019

With the winter grain harvest still underway Ukraine’s farmers have already brought in more grain this season than in all of last year and are on course to smash the previous record.

ESG is a must have in Russia, but adds no alpha

Ben Aris in Berlin November 12, 2019

If a Russian company doesn't pay attention to its environmental, social and governance score it will lose investors, but if it does switch to a more sustainable model it won’t earn any real reward.

Moscow has the second highest road rage score in the world

Ben Aris in Berlin November 12, 2019

Mister Auto released a survey of which cities in the world are the best and worst to drive in that found Moscow has the second highest road rage index in the world, after only Ulaanbaatar.

Moscow judge refuses to release two more Russian national Baring Vostok partners to house arrest

bne IntelliNews November 12, 2019

A Moscow court extended the pre-trial detention of the remaining two partners in the Baring Vostok fund, Ivan Zyuzin and Vagan Abgaryan, until January that worked with Russia’s top fund manager Michael Calvey.

IIF: 2020 the climate super-year

Institute of International Finance November 11, 2019

The growing importance of environmental, social and governance (ESG) performance to investors (and ultimately to voters) is one of the most important forces shaping the new global economy. CO2 emissions must peak next year or we are in trouble.

Germany fails to protect Nord Stream 2 from EU gas laws

bne IntelliNews November 11, 2019

Germany’s Bundestag parliament has failed to pass a bill that would have helped shield the controversial Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project from recent amendments to the EU’s gas directive.

Russia's consumer credit driven retail running out of steam, while Ukraine has a boom ahead

Ben Aris in Berlin November 10, 2019

The consumer debt profiles of Russia and Ukraine are very different. Russia’s household debt rose to 15.5% of GDP as of the end of 2018 and is just shy of its all time high of 15.6% set in 2014. Ukraine’s household debt has been falling steadily.

30 YEARS OF TRANSITION: Ground zero and the fall of the wall in Berlin

Ben Aris in Berlin November 9, 2019

I’d just arrived in Germany when the Berlin Wall came down. It was hard to appreciate the enormity of the change that had just happened at the time but the reunification of the two Germanys changed everything.

Sberbank to create AI alliance, launches supercomputer

bne IntelliNews November 9, 2019

Russia’s largest bank and digital innovation frontrunner Sberbank announced creating an Artificial Intelligence alliance including the state-controlled bank, Yandex and internet majors, MTC mobile operator, Gazprom Neft oil company, and RDIF

CEE monthly bond wrap: Bond issues in Eastern Europe pick up strongly in October, but activity subdued in Central Europe

Ben Aris in Berlin November 8, 2019

Bond issuers from Eastern Europe were active in October with 18 bonds issued worth a total of $4.5bn of which two-thirds of the value and 14 out of the 18 were Russian bonds, according to data provided by CBonds.

Russia’s RTS index hits six year high, MOEX sets a new all time record as Santa rally gets underway

Ben Aris in Berlin November 7, 2019

Its been a good week for Russian stocks as the dollar denominated Russia Trading System index hit 1,471 as of November 7, its highest level in six years, and the ruble denominated Moscow Exchange Index crossed above 3,000 for the first time.

Russian Yandex sells out its smartphone, unveils delivery robot

bne IntelliNews November 7, 2019

Russian internet major Yandex has sold out of its pilot smartphone model Yandex.Phone, which has proven to be a rare dud for the company, Kommersant daily reported on November 7, citing distributors and electronics retailers.

Russian car market continues decline in October

bne IntelliNews November 7, 2019

Sales of new passenger cars and light commercial vehicles (LCVs) in Russia continued its decline, decreasing by 5.2% in October 2019, according to the report by the AEB Automobile Manufacturers Committee overseeing the industry.