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ALROSA and SOGAZ: consolidation of forces
On February 19, Mirny hosted a meeting between the management of OJSC ALROSA and the SOGAZ Insurance Group. As a reminder, at the end of November 2014, OJSC SOGAZ acquired 99,74% of shares in the authorized capital of LLC Insurance Company SK ALROSA from the joint stock company ALROSA. The transaction amount was determined based on the results of an open auction and amounted to 620 million rubles.
The sale of the insurance company was carried out as part of ALROSA's program to exit non-core assets and concentrate on the diamond mining business. The change in the owner of the Insurance Company will not affect the execution of the current insurance contracts, the press service of OJSC ALROSA reports. The SOGAZ Insurance Group intends to ensure complete continuity in matters of quality and content of insurance programs in the future, the press service of SOGAZ Insurance Group emphasizes.
After the meeting, the heads of ALROSA and SOGAZ answered questions from the media. The briefing was short but focused.
Sergey Ivanov, Chairman of the Management Board of OJSC SOGAZ:
- Sergey Sergeevich, SOGAZ recently acquired the insurance company ALROSA. We know that for many years this company, in addition to its main activity, performed the most important social functions. Will these projects continue?
- Sure. We guarantee full continuity in matters of providing insurance coverage to enterprises and employees of the ALROSA Group. Having a much larger portfolio of VHI risks, having a larger number of contracts with health care facilities, we will ensure a consistently high level of medical support for employees of ALROSA and the group in the Russian Federation in accordance with high standards and best practices of corporate services. We intend to bring to our cooperation the experience of SOGAZ with such major corporations as Gazprom, Rosneft, Rosatom, and energy companies. This experience will be taken into account in the future when developing new programs for the ALROSA group.
- Which of them would you like to single out?
- Based on the results of the meetings held, we decided to do our homework: assess the risks and needs of Alrosa in insurance coverage. In particular, it was decided to conduct an examination of voluntary medical insurance programs. Based on the results, we will formulate insurance proposals for AK ALROSA for the next year, which will be nominated for tenders for insurance of enterprises of the Alrosa group.
- Have you already developed a mechanism for the merger of ALROSA and SOGAZ? How will it look like?
- We have been integrating the Company since the end of November, from the moment when SOGAZ was officially declared the winner of the auction. One of the most important issues is the issue of integrating our regional networks. In general, SOGAZ's regional development strategy does not provide for the presence of more than one branch in one region. In certain regions, in which both IC ALROSA and SOGAZ are present today, we may well take over the service of IC ALROSA clients in the future. In addition, we plan to open a SOGAZ branch in Mirny and branches in Lensk and Udachny. These regional divisions will undoubtedly be reinforced with the best personnel of the regional divisions of IC ALROSA. In general, all issues related to integration will be resolved in such a way as, first of all, to ensure the protection of clients' interests. Our main task within the framework of the merger is to continue cooperation with existing clients of the ALROSA Group, while maintaining their loyalty.
Ilya Ryaschin, acting President of ALROSA
- Ilya Petrovich, how do you assess the deal and how will the relationship between ALROSA and SOGAZ continue?
- I have already said that it is of fundamental importance for us that SOGAZ becomes the winner in the competition. The scale and experience of this Company, in our opinion, will allow us to do something more. It is not the money we received from the sale of the block of shares that are important - the main thing is for the insurance business to develop and improve. I believe that we have the right partner, and I believe and hope that the team will certainly feel the changes for the better.
- How is ALROSA doing now amid economic sanctions? What is the burden of the loan obligations and what will the Company expect this year?
- All issues related to sanctions, we are not concerned. We are absolutely independent in terms of acquiring equipment, technologies. We are engaged in import substitution, although taking into account the quality of equipment, it is quite expensive. As for credit issues, I have already said that the Company not only does not have any problems, but plans to repay more than $ billion of loans by the end of 2015. The situation with the change in the ruble's exchange rate positively influences us in this respect, and we feel economically reliable and stable.
- Recently, a meeting on ALROSA was held with Yuri Trutnev. What are the main points you would like to highlight?
- We examined all aspects of the Company's activities: from implementation to social policy. The Vice Prime Minister was pleased with the material presented by us. As for the practical results, we raised a number of problematic issues, which today complicate the work of the Company, for example, from the point of view of licensing, and the Deputy Prime Minister promised to help us. We also stated two significant projects for state support.
This is how the activities of the joint-stock company unfold under the new conditions. And, despite the difficult economic situation in the country, ALROSA maintained, and in some areas even improved its production results.