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Business Groups, Associations and Networking for Expats in Russia

Author: Jim Newham
Submitted: January 2015

While networking is an increasingly important part of Russian business culture, there are companies and individuals who find that access to the grey economy is more fruitful. Nevertheless, there are numerous networking groups, clubs and professional associations dedicated to business and individual professions. You can find out more about them in Russian business magazines and journals, including that of the local chamber of commerce, and on websites such as the Ministry of Economic Development.

Typically, you will have to sign up to the group to become a member and pay an annual membership fee. In return, you will gain access to the group's networking events, publications, online resources and consultation services. There is detailed information on how to become a member, along with various types of membership and the respective fees on the network’s website. Most of these groups also have regional and local branches.

Among the major business groups and networks are:

There are also networks specifically dedicated to women in business. These membership-based networks offer support to businesswomen in Russia and organise regular training and networking events. Some of the most prominent networks include:

In addition to this, there are numerous professional networks and associations dedicated to individual professions, such as the Russian Association of Business Education (RABE), Russian Association for Networks and Services and the National Association of Automotive Component Manufacturers. There is a list of further professional, governmental, and business associations in Russia on the Export Focus website.

As elsewhere in the world, online networking sites have also become very popular among professionals in Russia. These networks enable both companies and individuals to create online profiles and join interest groups. They can be useful tools for self-promotion, recruitment and making new contacts in your field. One of the most popular is the global networking site LinkedIn.

Expat business professionals might also be interested in the country-specific business groups in Russia. A good starting point is to approach the respective country's Chamber of Commerce in Russia, such as AmCham Russia and the Russo-British Chamber of Commerce. Most Chambers run membership clubs directed at both business professionals from the respective country who are doing business and Russian business professionals who are interested in doing business with that particular country. These clubs offer consultation services and organise networking events for their members. For other expat groups in Russia, see Expat Groups in Russia.




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