LSR Plans $2Bln Boost For Revenue

ST. PETERSBURG -- LSR Group, the developer and building-materials maker controlled by billionaire Andrei Molchanov, is seeking to increase revenue to $2 billion this year as the company benefits from rising prices for some products.

In 2007, sales amounted to $1.4 billion. LSR is building homes in Yekaterinburg and developing other properties to become less dependent on St. Petersburg, where the company is based.

"If all the projects that we have planned are implemented this year, revenue will reach a level of $2 billion," chief executive Igor Levit said on a conference call with reporters last week.

The country's construction market remains "very favorable," Levit said.

LSR, which raised $772 million in an initial public offering in November, on Wednesday reported net income of $359 million for 2007, up from $40 million a year earlier. The value of the company's real estate climbed 16 percent in the second half to $5.7 billion.

LSR's residential properties will contribute to "better acceleration" for the company's growth this year, said John Messenger, an analyst at ABN Amro Holding in London.

The company's building-materials unit will make it more attractive in the years ahead, he said.

Luxury-home prices in St. Petersburg jumped 38 percent last year, according to a survey by Knight Frank. Only two other locations recorded bigger increases, the broker said last week.