LUXEMBOURG and NEW YORK, March 16, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Sberbank and Sodrugestvo have signed a loan agreement today in Svetliy (Kaliningrad Region) setting a new facility for Sodrugestvo Group.
Mr. Alexey Koltchik, vice president of the North-West Branch of Sberbank; Mr. Alexander V. Lutsenko, chairman of the board of Sodrugestvo Group; and Mr. Stephane Frappat, chief executive officer of Sodrugestvo Group participated in the signing ceremony.
The loan will be used to finance the construction of a new port complex and a new soybean crushing plant being developed by Sodrugestvo in Kaliningrad, announced last week. Sberbank will finance $300 million of the project which is expected to cost US$ 430 million.
"The construction of this terminal and the new crushing facility has great importance for the growth of the agro-industrial sector, not only in the Kaliningrad region, but throughout Russia. This is why we believe in this project and have decided to participate in its financing," said Alexey Koltchik, vice president, North-West Branch of Sberbank.
"This project is extremely important for our group, and we are extremely pleased Sberbank has decided to support this endowment," said Stephane Frappat, chief executive officer, Sodrugestvo. "We are also very happy that this new facility will give Russia the most sophisticated specialized terminal in Europe to support the export of any kind of agricultural commodity to world markets. Russia is returning to the global agricultural market as a major supplier and our task will be to play a major role in this process. As for our new crushing plant, it will allow us to continue participating in the growth of the sector with the best products in the most competitive conditions."
Sberbank today is the largest credit institution in Russia and Eastern and Central Europe, accounting for about a quarter of the aggregate Russian banking assets. It is also the major lender to the Russian economy. The main shareholder of Sberbank is the Central Bank of the Russian Federation (60% of the voting rights), but the bank counts more than 250,000 shareholders in total. Sberbank disposes of the largest network in Russia with 17 regional banks, over 20,000 agencies; it has as well daughter banks in Kazakhstan, Ukraine and Belarus, as well as a representative office in Germany and a branch in India.
Sodrugestvo Group (www.sodrugestvo.com), founded in 1994, is a rapidly growing agro-industrial company serving global markets. The company is vertically integrated with three business units - specialized infrastructure (including deep-water sea ports), logistics (including railcars and storage facilities) and processing facilities (for the production of proteins and oils from vegetal and animal commodities). In 2010, Sodrugestvo crushed more than 1.1 million tons of soybeans and rapeseed, making it a leading player in Northern, Central and Eastern Europe. The company is also expanding into commodities trading and direct origination capabilities.
Headquartered in Luxembourg, the company has 32 facilities located in nine countries including Russia, Denmark, Brazil, the United States and several Eastern European nations. With consolidated sales of $857 million in its fiscal year ending June 30, 2010, Sodrugestvo has enjoyed average annual growth of 15 percent or more for the last 10 years. Sodrugestvo employs 1,300 and is privately held.
This release is available online in the Feintuch Communications media room at www.feintuchcommunications.com/sodru.
SOURCE Sodrugestvo Group