Business in Brief

VTB Lends $2.6Bln

VTB Group said Friday that it lent almost 70 billion rubles ($2.6 billion) to Russian companies this week.

The state-owned lender provided 33 billion rubles of loans to metals producers, 10.5 billion rubles to machinery and transport companies and more than 24 billion rubles to companies in other industries, VTB said in a statement. The bank also lent 1.3 billion rubles to municipalities. (Bloomberg)

VEB Doles Out $7.8Bln

Vneshekonombank said Friday that it had approved $7.8 billion of loans for refinancing firms' foreign debt.

The bank is lending to companies in the energy, metals, construction, transportation and telecommunication industries, VEB said in a statement posted on its web site. (Bloomberg)

Novolipetsk Buys Out Beta

Novolipetsk Steel said Friday that it completed the purchase of closely held Beta Steel and paid 13 percent less than the price originally agreed upon.

The Russian company said it would pay $350 million for the U.S. producer. Novolipetsk said Sept. 4 that it agreed to pay $400 million for the hot-rolled steel producer. Novolipetsk said it would fund the acquisition from existing funds. Beta has no cash or debt, it said. (Bloomberg)

Urals Loan Extension

Urals Energy, a London-listed Russian oil explorer, said Friday that it was continuing talks on getting an extension on loans from Sberbank.

Urals is negotiating terms on the $500 million loan it got to buy and develop the Sredne-Botuobinskoye field and a $130 million credit facility for developing the neighboring Dulisma deposit. (Bloomberg)

Norilsk to Cut 135 Staff

Norilsk Nickel said Friday that it was planning to cut 135 staff, or 10 percent, at its central office in Moscow.

The company has no plans to cut jobs at its factories above the Arctic Circle, a Norilsk official said, declining to be named in line with company policy. A spokesman said many of the jobs were currently vacant. (Bloomberg, MT)

Sedmoi Raises $166M

Sedmoi Kontinent said Friday that it raised 4.4 billion rubles ($166 million) in loans, although it gave no details on the source or intended use of the funds.

Spokeswoman Vlada Baranova said only that the loans were not part of the government's rescue plan aimed at supporting retailers. (Reuters)

For the Record

Power prices in European Russia fell 9.1 percent last week, the ATS power exchange said Friday. (Bloomberg)

Gazprom agreed with E.On Ruhrgas to form an energy conservation venture as it seeks to cut waste. (Bloomberg)

Truck maker KamAZ is seeking a $1 billion loan from VEB, Kommersant reported. (Bloomberg)

Renaissance Capital may cut as many as 600 jobs, or 40 percent, as the bank trims costs, Vedomosti reported Friday. (Bloomberg)

Rosneft plans to get an $800 million loan from Vneshekonombank, Interfax reported, citing a source with the oil producer. (Bloomberg)

LUKoil said Friday that it secured a $250 million loan from a group of banks to buy Akpet, which runs 693 filling stations in Turkey. (Bloomberg)