International Partnership in Russia: Conclusions from the by James Henderson, Alastair Ferguson (auth.)

By James Henderson, Alastair Ferguson (auth.)

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Additional info for International Partnership in Russia: Conclusions from the Oil and Gas Industry

Sample text

As Shell began to purchase Russian crude oil again in 1923, Lenin authorized the use of foreign help to boost production under the New Economic Plan. An American company, Barnsdall Corporation, had actually been operating in the Soviet Union since 1921,16 and it not only brought in more advanced technology to restore production but also encouraged other foreign investors, including British Petroleum (later renamed BP). 17 However, the recovery in output led to a reversal of 8 International Partnership in Russia Soviet policy, and almost all new agreements with foreign oil companies had been cancelled by 1930.

However, the impact on each company was rather different, with significant consequences for company strategy and potential interaction with foreign investors over the next five years. At LUKOIL and Surgutneftegaz the incumbent management were able to consolidate their positions through controlling the auction processes to ensure that only they could fulfill the investment requirements. Meanwhile at Yukos, Sidanco and Sibneft the incumbent management teams lost control of their companies to new financial investors, who used their influence and contacts with the Russian authorities to subvert the auction process.

The consolidation of the VIOCs and their subsidiaries To return to the 1990s, though, the privatization process was only one element of the transfer of ownership of the oil companies into private hands. As described above, the structure of the individual VIOCs had been arranged such that the producing, refining and marketing subsidiaries were not fully controlled by the holding companies above them. As a result, the new owners of the VIOCs had to go through a further process of industry re-organization which had a significant impact on the role of the major players in the Russian oil industry, including foreign investors.

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