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Russia banking: VTB bucks the trend

VTB Capital cemented its position as Moscow’s leading investment bank last year. With cross-border deals for Chinese and Indian clients it is becoming more than just the adviser of choice for Russian corporates. But will the firm’s ambitions get the better of it?


Yuri Soloviev, VTB Capital

VTB Capital’s dramatic ascent from bit-part player on Russia’s fractured investment banking scene to a powerful generator of deal-flow both locally and internationally has been extraordinary. In 2015 it again proved more than capable of startling its rivals by completing some of the most intricate pan-national M&A deals of recent times, many of them in politically complex emerging markets. The question now is whether the Moscow based investment house can continue to surprise its peers by maintaining its breakneck expansion, or will 2015 prove to be its high-water mark?

At the firm itself, there are no signs of letting up. Speaking to Euromoney in Moscow, Yuri Soloviev, former global CEO of VTB Capital and current first deputy president and chairman of the management board at its parent, VTB Bank, is quick to establish what he believes are the main factors separating the bank from its competitors.

First is a willingness to put internal capital to work to support the needs of key clients. “No other investment bank can devote $10 billion to their Russian operations; we have $200 billion, and we are willing to put it to use,” he explains.

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