VIST Group with its subsidiary VIST Mining Technology, a Skolkovo Foundation resident, and the international venture fund under management of I2BF Global Ventures and VTB Capital Asset Management signed an investment agreement. Funds will be used to conduct R&D within the Intelligent Mine project for creating autonomous mining equipment and to expand into international markets.
VIST Mining technology was implemented in pilotless mining truck BELAZ
Mining technologies and solutions of VIST Group are aimed at reducing operational costs for enterprises and increasing productivity. Now the company focuses on robotizing mining operations and developing autonomous equipment. This would allow to increase productivity and also improve safety in open pit mines, which is a global mining trend. VIST Group expects the first robotized mining trucks to start operating in late 2017.
Alexander Korchevsky, I2BF Global Ventures, Partner:
“VIST team was creating robotized solutions and products long before it became a general investment trend. The company was well-performing both in Russia and Kazakhstan as well as entering the international markets. So we consider it an attractive investment opportunity and we are happy to welcome VIST in our portfolio of companies implementing robotized and autonomous technologies for increasing productivity in the industrial environment.”
Investment Department of the Skolkovo Foundation was an investment advisory for the deal.
Vladimir Sakovich, Skolkovo Foundation, Investment Director:
“VIST is an example of those Russian companies, not numerous yet, that are showing good financial performance with a huge potential for international markets and also constantly developing innovative high-tech solutions. The company has gained leading positions both in Russia and worldwide, which surely requires serious investments. All the advantages of VIST made the deal process quite complicated for us: the company is too big for venture funds, but at the same time too technological for traditional private equity funds. Nonetheless, I2BF sees great opportunities in VIST business and is obviously a proper partner to help the company reach planned targets.”
The company has entered into a strategic partnership with the largest Russian coal producer SUEK. VIST systems have already been installed at all mines of Morocco potash producer OCP Group. International expansion is a top priority for the company. Kazakhstan is one of the most important markets where the company already has a number of long-term costumers. The investments would also be used for product customization and localization for the Kazakh market.
Dmitry Vladimirov, VIST Group, CEO:
“Investment in robotized technologies is a key trend in global mining. Leading raw producers as well as machinery manufacturers, such as Rio Tinto, BHP Billiton or Komatsu spend billions of dollars on creating and promoting autonomous solutions. I’m sure that with the support of the Fund we will be able to create world-class technologies and implement them at Russian enterprises. Part of investments will be used to enter foreign markets: Africa, Indonesia, India, Latin America, where we can provide most innovative and effective solutions for our customers.”
«Intelligent Mine» – first unmanned technology developed in Russia for exploration raw materials, project run by VIST Mining Technology in Skolkovo. Company staff did successful industrial testing of robotized trucks BELAZ and KAMAZ and plans to elaborate industrial cycle of loading of raw materials in autonomous mode in 2017. Estimate cost of the project is 600 mln RUB. Intelligent Mine is part of road map of AutoNet under National Technological Initiative.
VIST Group – one of the leading companies in integrated IT management systems for mining in Russia and CIS. Major clients for the company are SUEK, EVRAZ, Mechel, SDS, Severstal, POLYUS, EuroChem, OCP Group, Polymetall. In 2009 company was awarded by Government of Russian Federation for its Mine Fleet Management system “Karier”. Recently VIST Group actively increases export potential and
international sales, products of VIST are presented in South Africa, Indonesia. Morocco, Mongolia, Iran,
Vietnam, Kazakhstan. And in 2015 special prize for exporting potential founded by Minpromtorg of Russia
was awarded to VIST Group.
For more information visit www.vistgroup.ru
I2BF Global Ventures is an international technology focused venture capital firm with a global investment mandate. The mission of I2BF Global Ventures is to seek out technology companies and individual innovators that can deliver fundamental disruptions in the areas of cleantech, life sciences, information technology and aerospace. I2BF manages a portfolio of over 30 companies and total of $400 million in assets across five funds. In keeping with its worldwide investment the firm retains teams in New York, London, Moscow and Astana to ensure a truly global venture capital strategy and a hands-on management approach. Visit www.I2BF.com for more information or follow us @i2bf.
VTB Capital Asset management – is the part of VTB Capital Investment Management, one of the key business divisions of VTB Capital, VTB Group’s Corporate Investment Business.
Main services of VTB Capital Investment Management include the management of open-end and close-end funds, discretionary managed accounts, assets for pension funds, insurance companies, venture, endowments compensation funds, foundations and self-regulatory organizations.
VTB Capital Asset management offers one of the most extensive lines of investment products on the market and takes the leading market position among management companies in terms of assets under management. As of March 2017, total AUM stands at over Rub 400 bn.
Official website: www.vtbcapital-am.ru
The Skolkovo Foundation is a non-profit organization founded in 2010 for accelerating Russia’s transformation from a resource-intensive to an innovation-based economy. To achieve this objective, the Foundation is overseeing the creation of the Skolkovo Innovation Center, composed of more than 1,600 high-tech startups, Skolkovo Technopark, the Skolkovo Institute of Technology (Skoltech) - a new graduate research University established in collaboration with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology - and Skolkovo city, located near Moscow. Together, these entities establish a vibrant ecosystem of technology innovation and entrepreneurship. The cumulative revenue of Skolkovo’s startups through June 2016 reached $1,6 billion. They brought in more than $350 million in investment, creating 21,800 jobs and filing over 1,900 patent applications along the way. By 2020 over 2 million square meters of residential and office space will be built in Skolkovo with 35,000 people working daily in the Innovation Center. For more information: http://www.sk.ru/en