Appointments/Dismissals – January 2012

According to Russian business daily Kommersant (14 November 2012), Rostelecom Sales Director Pavel Zaitsev has been promoted to Senior Vice-President responsible for sales, IT and media assets at the telecoms operator. In addition, he will plan and control execution of the budget in the areas of innovation, organisational development, administration and macro-regional branches and take decisions on hiring and firing regional branch directors.

The international and long-distance telecom operator, which is controlled by state holding company Svyazinvest, is currently prioritising inter alia the development of  its own service centres and planning sales of 3G and 4G devices following the launch of corresponding mobile networks.

According to Russian business daily Kommersant (9 November 2012), Sergei Radchenkov, who had been chairman of Svyaznoi Bank since its foundation, is leaving the bank shortly, to be replaced by former deputy chairman of Expobank Tatyana Pupkova.

According to the newspaper, his departure is due to disagreement with the bank’s shareholders over the business model. Radchenkov had sought to maintain Svyaznoi Bank as a universal bank. However, the shareholders of the bank, which is majority controlled by Maxim Nogotkov’s Svyaznoi Group, have decided that Svyaznoi Bank should focus on the retail business.

According to Russian business daily Kommersant (9 November 2012), Nikolai Tsekhomsky has been appointed Sberbank head of finance. The current Vice-President and head of finance Alexander Morozov has been promoted to Sberbank. Deputy Chairman.

Tsekhomsky held a similar position a few years ago at rival state-controlled VTB Bank, before moving to run the Russian subsidiary of Barclays Bank and leaving on the sale of the subsidiary to Igor Kim.

As reported by the BBC on 6 November 2012, President Vladimir Putin has sacked Defence Minister Anatoly Serdyukov, with immediate effect. Serdyukov had become one of the clan at the top through close personal links, but recently fell out with his father-in-law, former Deputy Prime Minister Viktor Zubkov. These could have planted the seeds for his downfall.

Brought in to run the Armed Forces despite a lack of experience in the sector, it had been claimed that he would root out corruption, using his knowledge from running the Federal Tax Service.

Unfortunately it now appears that he may only have exacerbated the already high level of corruption in the Armed Forces, with Russian investigators raiding the offices of a military contractor (Oboronservice) in connection with allegations that the state-owned firm had been selling assets to for-profit organisations at a loss (amounting to an estimated GBP 62.5 million).

Serdyukov has been replaced by a Putin ally Sergey Shoigu, previously Minister of Emergency Situations (from 1994 to 2012) and until now Governor of Moscow Oblast. He holds the military rank of General of the Army.

It should be noted here that Serdyukov was sacked by Putin, and not Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev.

As reported in Russian business daily Vedomosti on 25 October 2012, Igor Putin, President Vladimir Putin’s cousin, has received another high-profile position, this time as a director of Podolsk bank Promsberbank, controlled by Alexei Kulikov, Anna Smirnova and Oleg Belousov (all holding 20 per cent shares).
Igor Putin is also on the board of two more banks – Master Bank and Russian Land Bank – and chairman of the investment company Vest Capital. From unidentified sources, he is not there for specific financial skills, but rather the links to his illustrious cousin Vladimir. Thanks to Vladimir, Igor can help to attract state finance and aid and abet the financial institutions in state tenders.


Former Kostroma Region Governor Igor Slyunyaev has been appointed Minister for Regional Development, replacing Oleg Govoryun who apparently resigned after being rebuked by President Vladimir Putin.

According to business daily Kommersant, it will be up to Slyunyaev to balance the interests of major financial-industrial groups in the construction sector, which consider the Ministry to be a pipeline for major state construction orders.