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Switzerland: 11:56 Samara: 13:56
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One mission

Swiss Center Samara is the first Swiss Business Center in the Volga Region. Our mission consists in facilitating and accelerating business development for Swiss companies on the Russian market and vice-versa by providing infrastructures, networks, market intelligence and services in the fields of trade, industry and science. Concretely, if you want to boost your exports, find new sourcing partners, launch assembling activities, set up production projects, create joint ventures, access distribution networks, develop new products and applications with renowned Russian scientific institutions, then the Swiss Center Samara can help you.

We form a young multicultural team, backed by experienced partners and extensive networks, and offer in-house services (market entry, company registration, investment projects and business intelligence) to accompany your projects in Russia or Switzerland. You can either work with our Neuchâtel-based LLC, our daughter company in Samara, our representatives in Oufa and Moscow, in Swiss francs or in rubles, under Swiss or Russian jurisdiction and administration, in French, English or Russian.

Why not Moscow?

Russian regions have been enjoying growing autonomy and notable development in past decades. Through special programs the Kremlin has been investing substantially in key regions, which, in a mindset similar to the Swiss cantons, are today competing with one another to improve their business climate and attract foreign and domestic investments. Together, they are increasingly becoming one of the drivers of industrial activity and economic growth in Russia.

Compared to Moscow, these regions are “wilder”. Many services and products are absent or rudimentary, there is less competition, the costs of doing business are lower, people and government are more accessible and there are many niches to occupy. For Swiss business, these regions can become key partners not only for trade but also R&D projects or production & assembly activities to serve the growing Eurasian market. They are also often overlooked as sourcing locations for raw materials, components, workforce or unique infrastructures.

Why Samara?

Samara Region is a typical example of the opportunities offered by the Volga Region. It has managed to attract significant federal support and launched numerous initiatives to foster and diversify its economy. Located 1000 km south-east of Moscow, the region has 3,2 million inhabitants spread over a territory that is larger than Switzerland.

This region is not only rich in natural resources (oil, gas, minerals), it is also the national aerospace cluster with a federal research center, companies that design and produce space vehicles, a group of subcontractors and a selection of renowned customers (ESA, ISS, NASA). Nearby Togliatti is home to the national car manufacturer AvtoVAZ, which has been working with General Motors and Renault-Nissan and attracted many automotive subcontractors to the region. Samara also hosts companies in the agribusiness, chemical, medtech, pharmaceutical, industrial equipment and ICT sectors. This industrial ecosystem combined with the government’s dynamism offers exciting opportunities for Swiss companies.

Business opportunities

Sales market:

Foreign companies, even those located in Moscow, sometimes overlook regional projects, although they present sales opportunities for their products and services: private and public hospitals and clinics, industrial plants, infrastructure projects, touristic complex…

Sourcing and Outsourcing:

Some Russian goods and services have become very competitive since the depreciation of the ruble and now present interesting sourcing alternatives for Swiss companies, and not only for raw materials. There are also hundreds of highly qualified companies and specialists ready to work with Switzerland at competitive costs.

R&D and Scientific Cooperation:

there are universities and R&D centers that offer excellent perspectives. For instance, the Samara National Research University works closely with the rocket engineering industry and has access to programs and infrastructure Switzerland could only dream about. Samara Medical University has developed top-notch core competencies in the field of medical imagery, augmented reality, dental technology and IT medicine.

Production & Assembly Activities:

Russian import substitution is happening and presents both a threat and an opportunity for Swiss companies. It is a threat because if companies do not change their business approach, some of them risk losing market shares to the competition, especially from Asia. It is an opportunity for three reasons:

1) When the policy ends, those who have localized will enjoy substantial market share and dominate specific niches while their competitors face high entry barriers;

2) Localizing in Russia brings preferential access not only to the domestic market but to all markets of the Eurasian Economic Union;

3) Russia and the Volga Region in particular offer favorable incentives for investment in manufacturing and production.

In this regard, there are numerous well-positioned regions in the Volga, including Samara. They have modern infrastructure, strong federal and regional support, a plethora of incentives (tax exemptions, compensations, cheap loans, etc.), large industrial basis to sell to domestically and regionally, special status and programs that benefit businesses and good universities with well-trained engineers and managers at affordable prices. For nation-wide projects, they are an ideal test-market and allow to develop projects at lesser costs.

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