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Today in Russian Business

The Russian government has renominated a number of key officials to the boards of state companies, including Deputy Prime Minister Alexei Kudrin and Kremlin deputy chief of staff Igor Sechin. For the first time in the history of Russia’s mobile communication, its subscriber base has dropped – by 8 million since January. The country’s biggest Internet firm, Yandex, plans to float shares in an IPO on New York’s Nasdaq stock exchange later this year. Russian high-tech firm Sitronics will pay $116.9 million to raise its stake in subsidiary Kvazar-Micro to 87%, and intends later to take full ownership of the IT firm. Russian investment bank Renaissance Capital has built up a 10 to 15% stake in Kazkommertsbank, Kazakhstan’s largest bank.

Finans Magazine has published its list of the top 101 Russian billionaires, with Oleg Deripaska in first place. Britain’s Inchcape, the world’s leading car retailer, is negotiating the acquisition of a 100% stake in Russian car dealer Musa Motors, estimated at $400-450 million. Russian Minister of Economic Development Elvira Nabiullina said that the recent two-day economic forum in Krasnoyarsk was fruitful, sparking the signing of ten investment agreements. Myanmar‘s military junta has awarded a potentially lucrative gold exploration contract to Victorious Glory International, a little-known company with links to Russia. Bank Rossiya, whose largest shareholder is Yury Kovalchuk, “a close ally of President Vladimir Putin”, is gathering television channels Ren-TV and St. Petersburg-based Channel 5 under a single holding called National Media Group.