To give some contextual perspective on recent company performance, the overall value of Russian exports declined by -33.5% from US$517 billion in 2011 to $343.9 billion during 2015.
In the analysis below, we compare Russia’s top 10 export companies based on asset values, sales and profitability as of May 2016. Also specified is the Russian city where each business has its headquarters.
Russia’s Top 10 Major Export Companies
Below are Russia’s biggest export companies organized by asset value. Shown within parentheses is the primary industry in which each company operates. Also shown is the change in asset value as of May 2016 compared to 2015.
- Gazprom (oil, gas): US$250.2 billion, down -37% from 2015
- Rosneft (oil, gas): $139.6 billion, down -39.2%
- LukOil (oil, gas): $69.6 billion, down -36.4%
- Surgutneftegas (oil, gas): $61.5 billion, down -10.7%
- Transneft (oil services, equipment): $36.7 billion, down -44.3%
- Magnitogorsk Iron & Steel (iron, steel): $14.4 billion, up 0.1%
- Norilsk Nickel (diversified metals, mining): $13.4 billion, down -33.8%
- Uralkali (specialized chemicals): $12.9 billion, down -0.3%
- Novatek (oil, gas): $12.1 billion, down -33.5%
- UC Rusal (aluminum): $11.9 billion, down -42.4%
Only one of these Russian exporters grew its asset values from 2015 to May 2016, namely Magnitogorsk Iron & Steel with a tiny 0.1% increase.
The nine other large Russian businesses posted decreases in their asset size, ranging from a -0.3% decline for potash fertilizer manufacturer Uralkali to a -43.3% reduction for oil services provider and equipment maker Transneft.
Sales is the life blood of all business, but particularly for firms that compete in international trade. Yet only one of Russia’s largest export companies increased its year-over-year sales as of May 2016.
- Gazprom: US$102.1 billion, down -38% from 2015
- LukOil: $90.4 billion, down -24.1%
- Rosneft: $80.8 billion, down -43.4%
- Surgutneftegas: $19 billion, down -29.3%
- Transneft: $13.3 billion, down -43.8%
- UC Rusal: $8.7 billion, down -11.4%
- Norilsk Nickel: $8.5 billion, down -27.7%
- Magnitogorsk Iron & Steel: $8.4 billion, down -0.4%
- Novatek: $7.8 billion, down -17.6%
- Uralkali: $3.3 billion, up 0.9%
Potash fertilizer manufacturer Uralkali recorded the only increase in sales, up a modest 0.9%.
Sales declines ranged from -0.4% for Magnitogorsk Iron & Steel to -43.8% for Transneft and -43.5% for Rosneft, two oil and gas industry players.
In face of a slowing global economy, nine of Russia’s top 10 major export companies managed to remain profitable.
- Surgutneftegas: US$20.2 billion, up 247.6% from 2015
- Rosneft: $5.8 billion, down -54.8%
- Gazprom: $4.9 billion, down -87.5%
- LukOil: $4.8 billion, down -38.5%
- Transneft: $2.3 billion, down -55.8%
- Norilsk Nickel: $1.7 billion, up 38.3%
- Novatek: $1.2 billion, down -64.4%
- Uralkali: $1.2 billion, down -3.3%
- UC Rusal: $558.3 million, up 117.4%
- Magnitogorsk Iron & Steel: -$400.3 million, up 0.1%
In fact, two of Russia’s top 10 major export companies managed to boost their bottom-line profit in the latest May 2016 period. Surgutneftegas increased its profits by 247.6% from 2015 while the black ink improved by 38.3% for Norilsk Nickel. Aluminum producer UC Rusal reversed a -$3.2 billion loss during 2015 to $558.3 million in black ink as of May 2016.
Magnitogorsk Iron & Steel remained unprofitable, maintaining about the same -$400 million loss as in 2015 to a $261.7 million profit as of May 2016.
Gazprom led in profit shrinkage, with a -87.5% decline from the $39 billion in profit during 2015.
Seven of Russia’s top 10 major export companies have their headquarters located in its capital city, Moscow.
- Gazprom: Moscow
- Rosneft: Moscow
- LukOil: Moscow
- Surgutneftegas: Surgut
- Transneft: Moscow
- Magnitogorsk Iron & Steel: Moscow
- Norilsk Nickel: Moscow
- Uralkali: Berezniki
- Novatek: Tarko-Sale
- UC Rusal: Moscow
Note some of the above company offerings may include products other than the principal category shown within parenthesis under the Assets tab.
For example, Norilsk Nickel produces not only nickel but also palladium, platinum and copper as well as byproducts such as cobalt, chromium, rhodium, silver, gold, iridium, ruthenium, selenium, tellurium and sulfur.
Similarly, Magnitogorsk Iron & Steel also mines and refines coal.
See also Russia’s Top 10 Exports, Highest Value Russian Export Products, Russia’s Top Trading Partners and Top Russian Trade Balances
Forbes 2016 Global 2000 individual company profiles, Example of top Russian company compiled for this study: Gazprom. Accessed on July 19, 2016
Forbes 2015 Global 2000 rankings, The World’s Biggest Public Companies. Accessed on July 19, 2016
Trade Map, International Trade Centre. Accessed on July 19, 2016
Wikipedia, Category: Companies of Russia. Accessed on July 19, 2016
Wikipedia, List of companies of Russia. Accessed on July 19, 2016