Dear friends,

The spring is over, and now it is time for warm summer days and charming white nights! May at SPIBA was very vivid and full of all kinds of events, so we are pleased to share with you our May bulletin!

On May 14th SPIBA held a meeting with “the best clown in the world” and the head of Fontanka Circus, Vyacheslav Polunin. The national artist shared with guests the plans for the Fontanka Circus. Vyacheslav Polunin talked about modern circus culture and challenges of its co-existence with the traditional circus. Polunin considers Russian circus to be very powerful and therefore, it is important to preserve its traditions. Nevertheless, the artist is always up to innovative and interesting things that really excite the public.

On May 15th  Steve Myulle, professor and chairman of the marketing department at Vlerick Business School gave a lecture about digital strategy for business – improving development and efficiency.  The development of information technologies gives companies a wide range of opportunities,. however, it is crucial not to forget about the possible risks associated with it. The speaker also discussed several internet-project business ideas that can be characterized as innovative and unconventional.

Also on May 15th a roundtable discussion focusing on the influence of international sanctions on the Russian business world was held. Vasiliy Dermanov, Associate Professor of Strategic Management at GSOM SPbSU, talked aboutcurrent economic problems, and listed the types of sanctions and the  extent of their influence. Artem Javoronkov, a partner at Dentons, gave a brief historical overview of sanctions and then , presented several cases, explaining to guests in which situations the sanctions are applicable. More information about the event can be found in the post-release in Russian.

On May 16th, Mr. Akira Saeki, Executive Deputy President of Japan Tobacco Inc., gave a guest lecture devoted primarily to  the modern practices of cross-cultural management. The points of transition of JT Group management from monopoly to a global player were discussed in detail. The participants of the meeting were interested in the strategy of the company, regulation of cooperation among cross-cultural teams, conflict resolution, as well as the support of retired employees.

On May 20th the Finance Committee held a conference on the topic of “New Trends and Relevant Issues of Tax Practice.” The main speakers of the conference were experts of such companies as Pepeliaev Group, Taxcom, MAZARS, Baker and McKenzie, DLA Piper, Capital Legal Services. The discussion included the highlights and changes in tax administration, transfer pricing, VAT deduction and property tax questions.

On May 21st, the regular meeting of the “Legal Discussion Club” took place. The discussion was around issues concerning “Criminal Due Diligence.” Alexey Dobrynin, Head of the corporate crime practice at Pen & Paper, highlighted the main aspects of criminal due diligence and the practical applications of it. Alexander Vainshtein, General Director of the International theatrical center “Legkie Ludi”, gave a practical example of how the applied criminal due diligence helped to resolve a conflict with law enforcement authorities resulting from problems with contractors.

On May 22nd a meeting concerning the prospects of personnel leasing in Russia was held by SPIBA HR Committee. The committee discussed the most important articles of federal law on contingent labor, including practices of using contingent labor and the concept of secondment. More information about the event can be found in the post-release.

On May 23rd SPIBA organized a meeting with Oleg Saveliev, the Minister of Crimean Affairs of the Russian Federation. The Minister talked about the obstacles faced by the newly created Ministry. The Ministry needs to widen the windows of opportunity in Crimea and in a very short timeframe ensure that the new territory is not simply “like Russia” but much better. For example, Crimea has the potential to be a stepping stone in the deoffshorization of the Russian economy with the creation there of a legal offshore zone. Oleg Saveliev assured the audience that the Ministry of Crimean Affairs will do everything it can to keep its doors open for any legal form of cooperation from the side of officials. Since the issue of qualified professionals is of current interest for Crimea, the Minister expressed a desire to gather young, talented people andprovide education for them at public expense with the involvement of specialized universities. Concerning the question of the future of the Ministry, Oleg Saveliev answered that it is a temporary function related to the current need for a fast decision-making process in order to ensure a positive future.

On May 27th a meeting was held concerning the differences of Russian legislation from European fire standards by which Western insurance companies operate. Companies that operate under the supervision of Russian inspections discussed issues of carrying out projects according to the standards of the Russian Federation and the experience of risk engineering of Western insurance companies in Russia.

On May 28th The HR Committee, in cooperation with Environment Committee, held a meeting concerning the issues of special assessment of work conditions. Alexey Britsun, the Head of State Labor Inspection of the Leningrad region, talked about how the inspection practices protect the rights of employees and also mentioned the possible problems that can arise in fulfillment of work. Alexander Korkin, Senior Assosiate, Pepeliaev Group, gave a presentation about the first implementation of the federal law on special assessment of work conditions, Ministry of Labor’s position regarding the deadline for executing thespecial assessment and establishment of compensation for work in hazardous working environments. Valeriy Adamson, Director of the Test Center of the Institute of Industrial Safety, Labor Protection and Social Partnership, presented a detailed comparative analysis of the  special assessment of work conditions and workplace certification and talked about the legislative and regulatory basis and methodology for conducting the special assessment.

On May 29th SPIBA and ANCOR Holding held a Business Forum «Increasing Business Competitiveness Through Effective Internal Processes Management». The event brought together business owners, and top HR managers of international and Russian companies Within the framework of the forum the following guests gave presentations: Dmitry Yalov, Vice-Governor of Leningrad region, Boris Kaplun, general director of AMCOR Tobacco Packaging, Oleg Bokov, Branch Director of “Heineken Brewery,” Leonid Chernigov, General Director of “NPF “RAKURS” and many others.

We once again wish you the best as the long-awaited arrival of summer is here and we look forward to seeing you all onthe traditional “White Nights” Boat Cruise!