Investment forums – a success factor in the global markets
103 Meridian (Singapore)
Olga Podoinitsyna, Member of the Board at VTB Capital:
We are living in a constantly changing world. Every day around us there are numerous events that will have a major impact on business development, communications and society in general. Just a few decades ago, it was impossible to imagine that information could be distributed in just a few seconds, and that people in different time zones could communicate with one another through videos calls on their tablet computers.
Modern companies are now forced to seek new and more effective marketing solutions to convey information to each consumer and to ensure the recognition of the financial markets. One of these instruments is the investment forums that have appeared in the portfolio of the largest Russian companies over the last fifteen years.
Investment forums are a great opportunity to present companies’ capabilities. Leading international experts, investors, corporate heads and government officials are gathered in one place to discuss real issues. Therefore, these events allow us not only to successfully position the company's business, but also help to strengthen the economic potential of the country.
Owing to their efficiency, investment forums have gained popularity among financial corporations. Since 1994 about 200 large-scale events have been organised in key economic centers of the world, such as New York, London, Singapore, Hong Kong, Moscow, Abu Dhabi, Dubai and others.
VTB Capital has operated in international markets since 2008. The company organises an annual landmark investment forum, "Russia Calling!”, which takes place both in Moscow and London - from 2012 it will also take place in New York. These forums provide a platform for direct dialogue between government representatives, international investors and Russian business experts. The main purpose of these forums is to show our international partners the full range of investment opportunities that exist today in Russia.
In May this year, we hosted our third "Russia Calling!" Forum in London, bringing together leading experts from the UK and Russia. During the event, nearly 1000 business meetings took place between international investors and heads of major Russian companies. In addition to this, the event attracted considerable interest from leading business media.
VTB Capital’s flagship event is the "Russia Calling!" Investment Forum in Moscow. This event has traditionally offered participants answers to questions on financial market development and given them access to information from the government, economy and business officials. In every one of the three years the forum has been held it was attracted over 1000 investors from more than 60 countries. The event proved highly effective and according to results generated after the forum in 2011, more than 1900 articles were secured in the Russian and international media. Participants described the event in a positive light, calling it useful and productive.
It is important to note that interest in VTB Capital Investment Forums from the expert community and the media has risen significantly. At last year's "Russia Calling!" Investment Forum, over 2000 participants attended, and over 1300 meetings were held between investors and top managers of Russian companies. This is a 30 per cent rise from the 2010 Forum.
The company actively participates in other key business events. This year, for example, VTB Capital attended the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum - a leading economical and business international summit - for the third consecutive year. As in previous years, the Forum 2012 hosted a VTB Capital booth, which has traditionally been the main platform for the meetings between VTB Group, Russian company heads and international investors. Each year, the VTB Capital Forum booth attracts numerous participants. For example, in 2011, Forbes magazine wrote: "... VTB Capital has built a two-floor booth. Descent from the 2nd floor is in the form of stairs packed in a glass cube. From the looks of it, people have come from another reality to us, the earthly representatives. On the Earth, rather than on the first floor, they meet a plasma screen with alternating images of daisies, the sea breeze and seagulls on it." It is important to us that the design of our venue for business meetings was valued.
Over the course of the three days of the St. Petersburg Forum more than 50 business meetings between partners and clients of VTB Capital took place at our booth, demonstrating the success of this arrangement. In addition, the booth became the site for interviews conducted between top managers of VTB Capital and leading Russian and foreign media. As a result of the event more than 200 media articles were published.
Thus, the experience of VTB Capital confirms that an effective marketing strategy for Russian financial institutions not only affects the reputation of the company, but also the image and investment attractiveness of Russia to global markets. The successfully implementation of international projects serves as a "calling card", not only to VTB Capital’s expertise, but also to the economic potential of Russia.
Another advantage of investment forums is the fact that they let us create a new perception of our country in the eyes of the international professional community and contribute to the development of the investment climate in Russia. Direct dialogue forums create the demand not only for Russian companies to achieve a high performance in global markets, but also allow for the development of intercultural relations and the strengthening of Russia's image as one of the most important centers of the global economy.