by Arthur Yernjakyan
The shareholders of the Zangezur Copper Molybdenum Combine are meeting today to reelect their CEO, to optimize their expenses and to solve some other organizational problems.
ArmInfo's correspondent has failed to get details about the meeting nor has he received any information from the Armenian office of Cronimet Mining, a German company owning a 75% stake in the combine.
Meanwhile, some Armenian media report that the shareholders are not satisfied with the company's financial performance. They believe that it gives too high priority to social responsibility and propose cutting the staff and raising the efficiency. For the moment the company employs 3,200 people.
Some of the shareholders suggest relieving the company's CEO Maxim Hakobyan, who owns a 12% strake in the capital, of the duty to manage the company and to appoint him to chair the board.
The new CEO has been selected through an international competition and will arrive with a team of some 20 people.
Some sources say that President of Cronimet Mining Gunter Pilasky believes that the company can be more efficient and that the Armenian authorities have too much influence on its work.
Zangezur Copper Molybdenum Combine CJSC is the largest mining enterprise in Armenia and exploits the Kajaran deposit, which is the richest in the CIS by its copper content. ZCMC was privatized for 132 mln USD on 14 December 2004. Afterwards, 60% of its shares passed into the ownership of Cronimet Mining (Germany), with the remaining 15%, 12.5% and 12.5% having gone to the Pure Iron Plant (Yerevan), Armenian Molybdenum Production CJSC and Zangezur Mining LLC, respectively. In 2012 the net profit of ZCMC amounted to 17.1 bln AMD versus 15,069 bln AMD in 2011 and 21.5 bln AMD in 2010. (As of 12 March 2013, the Central Bank's AMD/USD exchange rate was 414.90 AMD/1USD).
According to Cronimet Holding (headquarters in Karlsruhe, Germany), over the past few years the total investments in Zangezur Copper Molybdenum Combine
CJSC amounted to over $500 mln. The investments have ensured failure-free operation of the enterprise. By its equipment and production capacities, the Combine is highly competitive with the best international companies today. ZCMC is a local economic mainstay and makes an invaluable contribution to Armenia's economy and creation of jobs. In 2013, Zangezur Copper Molybdenum Combine CJSC topped the list of the largest taxpayers of Armenia, having paid 37.8 bln AMD to the state budget.
Cronimet Mining also owns 51% of "Pure Iron Plant" OJSC's shares and 51% of ELBAT CJSC, an automotive battery production plant. Cronimet Mining also has assets in South Africa. According to the latest data published on the official website of the company, the consolidated proceeds of Cronimet Mining totaled $531,060,000 in 2012.