One starts writing a history from a clean page and, in order to fill it, it may take courage and resolve.
Idea to write this Chapter came to us when a decision was taken to celebrate the 20th anniversary of our Company. We have grown twenty-fold since the moment of incorporation and we would like to officially commemorate our making of this fresh gain.
We want to use this Chapter and put in paper some of our collective memory and remember values that make up the soul of Rosexpertiza today; and express them for partners and staff members who will be called up to build Rosexpertiza in future. We are addressing this evidence of liveliness and everlasting value of our Past to the Company as a whole and to each employee personally irrespective of the position he or she holds.
Here, we are provided with an opportunity to express our satisfaction with a job well done. Since, too often we can perceive only the mundane nature of the process of managing the organization, we will try in this Chapter to demonstrate power and depth of our joint work and our perception of adventure we all are living through working daily at Rosexpertiza.
Rosexpertiza represents itself an adventure with its ups and downs and turns, successes and failures, its own vision and risks being taken which goes not only through the moments of humiliation, but also through moments of pride. We want to pass to those who, together with us, fill this adventure today with life and to those who will write next pages – the assuredness that flows from keeping allegiance to our principles and wonted openness to the world around us.
Any endeavor gets filled with sense thanks to the way it relates to other people: people we work with, people we work for, and public which we belong to. Apart from what we see as our duty to develop what we created twenty years ago and pass it to the next generation, we believe that our company plays a public role too which is substantial for our future.
Examples of human experience all run through our history. People who are represented on these pages, each in his or her own way, represent all those who participated, are participating or will participate in building and development of Rosexpertiza.
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Audit Company “Rosexpertiza” was established in 1993 in Moscow. Alexander Perov was its founder and first director. An idea of national audit and consulting firm capable to accumulate all the best in professional environment of auditors, accountants, consultants and lawyers with experience of national and international practice was embodied in creation of the company. The Company chose as its priority activity - provision of services to large and mid-size industrial and agricultural enterprises, foreign trade organizations, banks and investment firms.
In 1994 Rosexpertiza came up to active development of audit services market. The Company was facing a task to form a client base and validate professional skills and competence of its employees in practice.
Initially, the main area of activity of Rosexpertiza was general and banking audit. In 1994 the Company acquired licenses necessary to provide such services.
Among the first employees of Rosexpertiza there were: Alexander Kozlov, Vladimir Abramov, Elena Fominykh, Leila Tabaeva, Sergey Biryukov, Natalia Suslova, Nina Stepanyantz, Nelli Dorofeeva, Natalia Vyazmina, Elena Povarkova, Alexei Chepurenko, Elena Saakyan, Olga Shelekhova, Nadezhda Bugakova, Elena Fedorova; with many of these continuing to work for the Company until now. Despite the small number of staff (the Company employed at the time about 20 people while three of them were certified auditors). Rosexpertiza succeeded to sign over 10 contracts during the first year of work. In particular, such enterprises as Rosvneshtorg, Rosugol, Raznoimport and Soyuzplodoimport enjoyed services of the Company, and this fact could not be recognized anything but indisputable success for a new business.
1995 was a year of rapid growth for Rosexpertiza. A number of clients and staff rose almost tenfold.
With enterprises working in different regions of Russia and becoming clients of Rosexpertiza, the Company was induced to start creating a network of branches that would allow maintaining closer contacts with clients where they are located.
The first branch of Rosexpertiza was opened in Saint-Petersburg in 1995 and was headed by Boris Trifonov. Rosexpertiza was granted with a status of authorized consulting company by Directive of Leningrad Region Governor. The Company was accredited with Saint-Petersburg and Leningrad Region Government to provide an expertise opinion on whether investment projects were substantiated and would pay off and to develop business plans and perform audit reviews of state enterprises of the city and region.
While working with enterprises from diverse segments of economy, the Company was gradually accumulating experience, making analysis of clients’ needs and forming new service lines. As practice has shown the most favorable prospects in the audit market are connected with companies that do not limit themselves with rendering audit and accounting services only, but also can offer a variety of consulting services ensuring a comprehensive approach to the needs of clients.
Going by market needs, Rosexpertiza began to develop a service line of consulting since 1995 and, originally, this service segment included legal consulting on various issues of business-economic activities (in particular, in the area of taxation), and, later, was complemented with such services as management and financial consulting, independent appraisal, project consulting. These stages in the Company’s history are associated with the names of Sergey Ryabikov, Vyacheslav Dunduk, Vladimir Zavarnov, Alexei Mordovichev, Andrey Malinin, Alexei Vasiliev and other heads of consulting services, the Company keeping contacts with many of those till now.
In 1995 Rosexpertiza was one of the first audit companies which created its own subunit to develop automated support systems for business-economic activities of enterprises. The Company specialists headed by Igor Kolpakov designed a universal automated system OLYMP which is a combination of methodology materials, applied and systemic software resources that regulate information-algorithmic support for business-economic activities of enterprises or holdings and ensure that computer facilities are comprehensively applied at all stages of the technological scheme of management.
Receiving of new licenses to perform audit of stock exchanges, off-the-budget foundations and investment institutes (in 1995) and audit of insurance organizations (in 1996) facilitated a further expansion of the spectrum of services rendered. In addition, since 1996 the Company has become a licensee to carry out work when using data that represent state secrets which allowed the Company to take advantage of an important market segment and bring enterprises of military-industrial complex and nuclear power industry (for instance, Mayak Industrial Complex, Rosvooruzhenie State Company, Energia Rocket and Space Corporation named after Korolev and others) into the list of its clients.
Since 1996, Rosexpertiza has become a regular participant in tenders and projects under the aegis of World Bank and European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. In this regard it is worth mentioning such projects as audit of financial statements under Automobile Roads Restoration and Maintenance Project, Bridges Repairing Project, World Bank Credit Portfolio Formation Project, audit of State Employment of RF Population Fund financed by International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD). In 1997, the Company was appointed a consultant within the framework of World Bank, RF Finance Ministry, RF Economics Ministry and Russian Center for Privatization Program to Assist Restructuring of Enterprises (PSRP).
At the same time Rosexpertiza continued to actively tap regions and develop a network of branches. Offices of the Company opened in large industrial centers of Russia – Kaluga (Alexander Moiseenkov), Yekaterinburg (Victor Grechishkin), Nalchik (Vladislav Kharzinov), Rostov-on-Don (Anatoly Baryshev, 1996), as well as in Tula (Lyudmila Sigeikina), Chelyabinsk (Alexander Shitov) and Khabarovsk (Vladimir Shevchuk, 1997).
By 1997, Rosexpertiza had possessed a full set of licenses to carry all kinds of audit activity and could offer to its clients a maximum broad selection of audit and consulting services. By the same time period (1997-1998), a new management team had formed in the Company which included Alexander Kozlov as General Director, Igor Nasibullin, Leila Tabaeva, Dmitry Zhiltzov, Maxim Potapov and – a bit later – Dmitry Kostoev and Alexander Yerofeev.
In 1999 Non-State Educational Establishment “Business-Audit Training Center” was added to the structure of Rosexpertiza Group of companies which received a license from Moscow Government Education Committee to provide additional professional training in the field of accounting reporting and audit. Such giants of Russian economy as Lukoil, TNK-BP, Surgutneftegaz, Millhouse Capital and many others have made use of services of the Training Center. Anna Konshina was its Director over many years.
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In order to illustrate the level reached by Rosexpertiza at the turn of the centuries, to estimate its experience and scale of projects implemented, it is sufficient to note only a few from the most indicative continuing clients of the Company, while some of them the Company manages to keep till present.
It is Surgutneftegaz JSC, one of the three leading Russian oil companies. Since 1995 Rosexpertiza has been auditing statements of Surgutneftegaz and enterprises of the respective group. Besides, during the past years our specialists rendered a whole range of consulting services to the oil company: from legal and tax ones to services in the area of corporate finances.
It is Mining-Metallurgical Company “Norilsk Nickel” – the largest Russian and one of the world largest producers of non-ferrous and precious metals with Rosexpertiza being its auditor since 1995 too. A share of Norilsk Nickel in the volume of industrial output of Russia is almost 3%. And here also, Rosexpertiza successfully completed a number of consulting projects in the area of corporate finances, appraisal, accounting reporting and taxation methodology.
It is energy machine building concern “Power Machines” – the largest Russian producer of all types of energy equipment. Rosexpertiza specialists partook in different stages of the project to create this production holding, provided services in the area of project financing and, naturally, over many years have been auditors of statements of all enterprises of the Concern – Energomashexport, Leningradsky Metal Plant, Electrosila, Plant of Turbine Blades, Kaluzhsky Turbine Plant.
It is MDM Group which enterprises Rosexpertiza, at the same period, had successfully realized several large audit projects for. MDM Group invested resources in creation of three industry companies: Sibirskaya Coal Energy Company “Baikal-Ugol” – largest Russian coal conglomerate producing about 40% of energy coals in the country, Mineral-Chemical Company “Evrokhim” managing enterprises that produce main chemistry products and raw materials for its production and Russian leader in agricultural chemistry, as well as Trubnaya Metallurgical Company created on the platform of Volzhsky, Seversky and Sinarsky Pipe Plants.
Finally, it is a gigantic telecommunications holding “Svyazinvest”, being in those years – a natural monopolist and inheritor of all telephone industry of the Soviet Union. Several years of work with regional companies of Svyazinvest on all the territory of Russia from Moscow to Sakhalin and Kamchatka laid foundation for our consecutive many years of work in the field of telecommunications including cooperation with giants of today – VympelCom and Rostelecom.
As far as non-production sphere is concerned, in late 1990s Rosexpertiza had among its clients the following ones: Center for International Trade, Expocenter, Partiya Trading Holding, hotels, banks (including Central Bank of RF), insurance and investment companies, state establishments. Also, in 1998-2000 a number of contracts to audit projects financed by World Bank and EBRD was successfully carried out.
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While advancing its business the Company has never remained outside the process of development of audit profession in Russia. In 1996 Rosexpertiza, together with other leading audit companies, was a co-founder of Union of Professional Audit Organizations (SPAO) which provided the Company with an opportunity to participate directly in development of auditing standards and professional ethics, legislative and standard-legal acts that regulate audit activities, and to interact with various state bodies. First Chairman of Union of Professional Audit Organizations (SPAO) was Mikhail Nikolsky, a Rosexpertiza representative.
During the several consecutive years Rosexpertiza became a member in Association of Russian Banks, Guild of Financiers, Council of Producers and Exporters under RF Ministry for Foreign Economic Relations, a winner of the competitive selection among specialized organizations to assess property of organizations-debtors which was organized by Federal Debt Center under RF Government and, also, got accreditations from Agency for Restructuring Credit Organizations (ARCO), Russian Fund of Federal Property (RFFI), Russian Federal Service for Insolvency Cases and Financial Health and a whole number of other establishments and organizations to render respective services.
The Company met XXI Century with new successes and facts of wide recognition in Russian audit and consulting market.
In 2000-2001 the Company was authorized by RF Ministry for Property Relations to audit state unitary entities and was awarded with a winner title in qualification tender to provide Russian Property Ministry with audit and consulting services in respect to joint-stock companies with their controlling stakes being in federal property. These accreditations formed, for many years ahead, a platform for one of the largest service lines of the audit practice of Rosexpertiza.
By early 2001 over 150 companies including 12 clients from TOP-100 enterprises of Russia were continuing clients of Rosexpertiza.
At the same time, a reputable EXPERT magazine named Rosexpertiza as the only audit organization and one of TOP-100 Russian companies with high reputation and characterized by public-economic stability.
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Progress of market reforms in Russia and a resulting rapid growth of large business which overstepped the national borders determined international cooperation as a new vector of the professional development of Rosexpertiza. In 2001-2003 a whole string of audit projects in cooperation with Big-4 Companies has started, and since that moment Rosexpertiza engaged in search of its own niche among auditors providing services in line with international quality standards.
Intense series of talks with various international organizations of accountants and auditors in 2004 resulted in the Company’s joining a large world association Moores Rowland International which was the 8th in the ranking of international audit amalgamations at the time. Its membership in Moores Rowland allowed the Company to come to a quality-new level of work and ensure recognition of its audit products on the part of foreign users.
Concurrently, Rosexpertiza was gaining a whole group of new partner firms which were members of Moores Rowland in Russia. One of them was audit firm “I.S.K.” under the leadership of Dmitry Ogorodov now embodied into Yaroslavl branch of Rosexpertiza. Andrey Potzeluev along with his employees created a firm “Accounting Consultants” and simultaneously a new service line of Rosexpertiza. The Company still continues successful cooperation with some of its former colleagues from Moores Rowland.
New quality of Rosexpertiza in combination with unchangeably high professional level of its staff has formed new opportunities for the Company’s partaking in processes of reforming the methodology base of accounting and audit systems in Russia. So, a consortium of KPMG, Rosexpertiza and French professional organizations CNCC and OEC in 2004 became a winner of a European Commission competition to develop a project on reforming Russian audit (“TACIS / Audit Reform in Russia II”). In late 2005 this work resulted in publication of “White Book on New Concept of Auditors’ Appraisal System in Russian Federation”. The same year Rosexpertiza together with PricewaterhouseCoopers won and in 2006 successfully completed a project on implementing TACIS Program “Reform of Accounting Reporting in Russia II”. All these achievements are inseparably associated with the name of Elena Zubova – Chief Methodologist of Rosexpertiza for many years.
In August 2005 Rosexpertiza was registered with US Public Company Accounting Oversight Board – PCAOB and, as such, got an opportunity to cooperate with American listing companies and their subsidiary structures.
In 2006 the Company got a special license entitling it to provide services under the international brand of Moores Rowland Ltd. necessary to present statements of Rosexpertiza clients in international financial markets.
In 2007, when a new world alliance Praxity, AISBL was created through union of Moores Rowland International and largest international partnership Mazars, Rosexpertiza joined, as a full-fledged member, the new organization.
We spent the next several years closely cooperating with Praxity, a global leader among professional associations, and doing a huge amount of networking with international audit and business consultancy firms as well as slowly but surely developing a clear understanding of the sort of quality that was expected from us and the kinds of demands we were supposed to meet as members of an international alliance of accountancy, tax and business consulting firms.
2011 saw the start of a new international integration project launched by Rosexpertiza on account of which we had to leave Praxity.
The new project with Grant Thornton International Ltd., an organisation that up to that point had been almost unheard of in Russia but that is widely recognised in the international market, involved combining the professional practices of Rosexpertiza and the Russian member firm of Grant Thornton on the basis of specially set up joint venture Grant Thornton Rosexpertiza LLC owned by the shareholders and members of both of the parent companies. For a number of reasons the project failed to meet expectations and was abandoned in the autumn of 2013.
Finally in 2014 the company became a member of the Crowe Horwath International accounting network, ranked 9th globally (according to the annual ranking of audit and accounting firms published by the International Accounting Bulletin). In late 2014 Rosexpertiza set up a specialised wholly owned subsidiary Crowe Horwath Rosexpertiza LLC whose main goal is to focus provision of services in the target market.
Crowe Horwath wants to be ranked 7th largest audit firm worldwide and we hope that our contribution will help them achieve this goal in the foreseeable future.
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Consistently strengthening its position in the market of professional services Rosexpertiza continues to pay close attention to charity and projects of public and social interest. One of the first charity events for the Company was its participation in UN and UNESCO Project “Books with Illustrations for Children Who Are Blind” in 1996. In 1998 the Company signed Cooperation Agreement with State Tretyakov Gallery which envisaged a wide spectrum of audit and consulting services provided by the Company gratis, and Russian Olympic Committee – a leading organization in national sport development – was cooperating with Rosexpertiza over many years with the Company being its official partner.
Among socially important projects that Rosexpertiza took part in the consecutive years are the following – Fund of Financial Support for Restoration of Christ the Savior Cathedral, RF Chamber of Commerce, Financial University under RF Government, Modern History Foundation, Foundation for Support of Russian Olympians and many others.
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Rosexpertiza of today is a modern highly technological audit and consulting company that has at its disposal everything needed for further dynamic development. We celebrated our 20th anniversary as a strong and mature company and now we have our sights set on new achievements.