Factbox: Foreign banks in Russia


Foreign banks that once treated Russia as an undiscovered country where easy money could be made are now finding it a cut-throat market tougher than some bargained for.

To follow is some background about foreign banks in Russia:

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Austria's biggest bank Raiffeisen Bank opened in 1989 and gained scale through its $550 million acquisition of Impexbank in 2006. In 2012 its profit after tax in Russia was 473 million euros ($608 million) - up 47 percent.

Italy's Unicredit has been in Russia for more than 20 years and its local subsidiary has around 110 branches. In 2012 UniCredit Bank Russia reported a record net profit of 17.48 billion roubles ($559 million).

Citi entered in 1992 and expanded organically. It reported over $300 million in profit from Russia last year.

SocGen has spent around 4 billion euros ($5.2 billion) since 2006 building up an 82 percent stake in Rosbank. This year, it is expected to post a slight profit for SocGen's international retail arm after a 2 million-euro ($2.6 million) loss last year.

Britain's Barclays paid ��373 million, or $745 million, for Expobank in 2008. It sold in October 2011 for a loss of about 90 percent. Its Russian business now focuses on investment banking services.

HSBC said in 2008 it would inject $200 million of new capital to fuel expansion in Russia, where it has had a presence since 1918. It retreated from retail banking in 2011 but remains in Russia with financial advisory and commercial banking operations.

Spain's Santander sold its Russian operations in 2010 to Russia's Orient Express, according to reports.

Swedish bank Swedbank said in April it would discontinue operations in Russia, as business volumes of its Baltic and Nordic corporate clients in Russia and Ukraine were marginal. The cumulative result for its Russian operations for the total period was positive, it said.

Belgian banking and insurance group KBC in December agreed to sell its Russian banking unit Absolut Bank to a group of Russian companies.

Wall Street and Europe's large investment banks have a presence in Moscow, including: Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, JPMorgan, Deutsche Bank and UBS.

Goldman Sachs won a mandate in mid-January to work as an effective corporate broker to Russia's government to help it attract a broader range of global institutional investors.

Credit Suisse decided to move its Moscow investment banking advisory operation to London as part of broader cost cuts, a source familiar with the matter said in December.

New Zealander Stephen Jennings founded investment bank Renaissance Capital in 1995. In November, after three years of losses, he sold to billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov and left Russia. RenCap last week reported a 2012 loss of $378 million but said the investment bank was now operationally profitable.

($1 = 31.2600 Russian roubles)

($1 = 0.7778 euros)

(Reporting By Megan Davies and Katya Golubkova in Moscow, Lionel Laurent and Jean-Michel Belot in Paris, Michael Shields in Vienna, Phil Blenkinsop in Brussels, Steve Slater in London, Mia Shanley in Stockholm and Lauren Tara LaCapra in New York; Editing by Giles Elgood)