INTERNATIONAL TRADING COMPANY IN LANDMARK VENTURE
TO FACILITATE COMMERCE IN FORMER SOVIET REPUBLIC
NEW YORK, March 9 /PRNewswire/ -- First Ukrainian International Bank, the first independent bank in Ukraine, announced its opening today. The bank has been capitalized by a group of Western and Ukrainian investors led by AIOC Corporation and advised by Bank Mees & Hope NV.
AIOC is a New York-based, leading international trading organization and has made the investment through their Luxembourg-based finance arm, AIOC Finance Corporation S.A. Bank Mees & Hope is the leading Dutch bank in international trade and commodity finance.
First Ukrainian International Bank is fully licensed, registered and authorized by the Ukrainian government. Headquartered in Kiev, the bank has its main operating office in the country's industrial heartland city of Donetsk, and plans to open 15 - 20 branches throughout Ukraine within the next six months.
Established in response to the lack of an adequate banking system in Ukraine, participants in this pioneering venture believe it is essential to support the former Soviet republic's emerging economy and businesses. Services the bank offers include foreign exchange; letters of credit; and trade, export and shipping financing.
"Through our extensive experience in trading and doing business in Ukraine, and in the wake of the collapse of the USSR, it became obvious that an adequate banking system needed to be established as a priority," said Alan Clingman, president of AIOC and a board member of the new bank. "This historic enterprise is a fundamental step toward establishing a viable economic system in this major industrial and agricultural country."
Ukraine, with a population of 52 million people, is the fifth largest steel producer in the world and a major supplier of coal, crude oil, iron ore, and natural gas. The country is also agriculturally rich -- capable of feeding itself with a surplus.
"The establishment of the bank will provide stability and an infrastructure for other foreign entities seeking to invest in the country, and will help facilitate trade among the former Soviet republics," said Clingman. "We have already secured the support of many multinational industrial clients who are doing business in Ukraine.
In addition to AIOC and Bank Mees & Hope NV, Ukrainian founding investors in the bank include Promstrojbank, the state-owned bank; Azov Shipping Company and Azovstal Iron and Steel Works, both located in Mariupol; and Zasyadko Coal Mine, located in Donetsk.
Chairman of the bank's board is Alexander A. Buljanda, a member of the Ukrainian parliament and general director, Azovstal Iron and Steel Works. In addition to Clingman, other AIOC board members include executive vice president Alexander Krasner, and senior vice president Elliot Spitz.
Additional board members include Robert L. Speelman, and J. Dalmijn, directors, Bank Mees & Hope; Capt. Anatoly Bandura, member of the Ukrainian parliament and president, Azov Shipping Company; Yefim Zvyagilski, member of the Ukrainian parliament and general director, Zasyadko Cod Mine; and Jemma Moslova, director, Promstrojbank.
In addition to traditional methods of finance, Bank Mees & Hope has strong interest in countertrade, buy-backs, counter purchase activities and is increasingly involved in other financial services, such as consultancy and participations.
Headquartered in New York City, AIOC is an international trading conglomerate dealing in metals and natural resources. The company has offices in Johannesburg; Kiev; London; Mariupol; Moscow; Pittsburgh; Shanghai; Vienna; and Zug.
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/CONTACT: Katherine Murtagh or Mary Louise Neary of Bozell Public Relations, 212-484-7400, for AIOC/ CO: AIOC Corporation; First Ukrainian International Bank ST: New York IN: FIN SU: PS -- NY003 -- 6326 03/09/92 10:48 EST