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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

AvtoVAZ Handpicks Executive

The country's largest carmaker, AvtoVAZ, has handed over the reins of its representative office in Moscow to the younger brother of the company's newly installed chief, Vladimir Artyakov, a company spokesman said Thursday.

With Yury Artyakov at the helm, the role of the carmaker's representative office is likely to be expanded to include a Lada sales operation for Moscow and the surrounding area, the spokesman said by telephone from the International Motor Show in Geneva.

The move comes as AvtoVAZ reviews its distribution system as part of a sweeping restructuring program.

The spokesman's comments follow a report in Vedomosti that cited Vladimir Artyakov as saying trust was the main reason his brother was hired for the position.The Vedomosti report also said Yury Artyakov did not have any experience either in marketing or the car industry, as he was previously the head of the little-known company Profit.

In response to a question about Yury Artyakov's experience, the AvtoVAZ spokesman said: "You can argue about that. The main experience should be managerial."

"Loyalty is important, especially during such major changes like at AvtoVAZ," said Alexander Zhukov, a car analyst at brokerage Metropol.

As new head in Moscow, Yury Artyakov replaces Yury Zektser, who previously sat on the carmaker's board of directors. Zektser was also previously head of AVVA, a key subsidiary.

Zektser is one of a number of senior executives who have been let go since two officials from state arms dealer Rosoboronexport were given the two top positions at the company in December.