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Troika Hires Ageshin From VTB Capital for Fixed-Income Sales

Troika Dialog hired Evgeny Ageshin from larger rival VTB Capital to run its fixed-income, currency and commodity sales team as it seeks to become Russia’s biggest investment bank.

Ageshin, who was co-head of foreign exchange and derivative sales at VTB, started yesterday, said Maria Zhog, a spokeswoman for Moscow-based Troika, a unit of OAO Sberbank, Russia’s biggest lender. Ageshin will report to Andrey Chuprin.

State-run Sberbank merged its fixed-income trading operations with Troika in March, two months after paying at least $1 billion to buy the country’s oldest brokerage. Maxim Safonov, Troika’s head of fixed income, currencies and commodities, said March 15 the bank may hire as many as 11 bankers to double its fixed-income sales team.

Sberbank Chief Executive Officer German Gref, a former economy minister, is seeking to turn what was once the Soviet Union’s savings bank into a full-service financial firm that can compete at home and abroad in areas from bond underwriting to stock trading. Troika plans to increase its staff of about 100 bankers by about 40 percent this year, Todd Berman, head of investment banking, said Nov. 29.

Citigroup, RenCap

Troika last month hired bankers Steve Kale, David Theys and Dmitry Zubatyuk from Citigroup Inc., Arma Partners and Renaissance Capital, respectively. Kale, who previously led Citigroup’s equity capital markets origination team for Russia, joined as head of equity syndicate group. Theys was named head of telecommunications, media and technology, while Zubatyuk became director for oil and gas.

VTB Capital, created from scratch three years ago by VTB Group, Russia’s second-largest bank, was the biggest organizer of Russian debt sales last year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. OAO Gazprombank was second, followed by Troika and Sberbank.

VTB’s chief economist, Alexei Moiseev, is leaving the bank to become a deputy finance minister, the Vedomosti newspaper reported yesterday, citing unidentified people with knowledge of the matter. Moiseev declined to comment on the report by phone today.

VTB’s press service declined to comment on the departures.

“We have hired over 100 individuals since the beginning of the year,” Sue Maple, global head of human resources at VTB Capital, wrote in an e-mailed statement. “We see no reason to change course.”

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