Annual survey — best emerging market banks

Russia
Alfa-Bank

“Alfa-Bank's move into the North American markets marks an important step in the expansion of our business,” says Pyotr Aven, president of Alfa-Bank. He can say that again. Alfa posted a net profit of some $80 million in 2000, increasing its equity to more than $300 million, up from $255 million at the year's start. In a country where the financial strength rating of nearly all banks is E —the lowest rating — Standard & Poor's raised Alfa's to triple C in February 2001. The bank's ratings reflect Russia's high-risk economic and banking environment and the bank's own moderate financial profile. Not everything's roses, however, as the institution has still only partially recovered from its significant losses in 1998.

Pyotr Aven, President