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June 28 2005

YEKATERINBURG. June 28 (Interfax) - Verkhnaya Salda Metallurgical Production Association (VSMPO), one of the world's leading milled titanium producers, and Avisma, which controls 30% of the world's titanium sponge market, completed their merger, the VSMPO-Avisma Corporation's press office told Interfax.

Vladislav Tetyukhin, the general director of VSMPO-Avisma, issued a directive, which says VSMPO and Avisma will operate as branches of the corporation from July 1.

The corporation said in a press release that Nikolai Melnikov, VSMPO's deputy general director for production, and Vladimir Tankeyev, Avisma's acting general director, have been appointed general directors of the respective branches.

An advisory board Tuesday approved VSMPO-Avisma's transitional structure, which incorporates eight divisions: budgeting, shareholder relations, accounting and tax, subsidiary relations, intellectual property and patenting, certification and standardization and licensing and information technology.

The advisory board includes five committees: strategic planning, personnel, public relations and media, social policy and legal affairs.

The Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) recently cleared VSMPO and Avisma to merge, although the companies announced their merger plans back in September 2004. They planned to complete the merger by June 30.

VSMPO-Avisma's US GAAP profit soared 58.5% to $122.8 million in 2004. Revenue increased 38.6% to $557.1 million and EBITDA was up 63.9% to $166.6 million.

Vyacheslav Bresht, the company's board chairman, and Tetyukhin each own 30% of VSMPO-Avisma. The Renova group owns 13.4% and the rest of the shares are in free float.

Interfax: Daily Business Report