What is your commercial strategy?

Assuming you have researched the market and identified its potential, growing your sales on the Russian market will require a clear plan and a reliable operational team on the spot to execute it.

There are multiple tools to start selling at reasonable costs. Knowing what works or doesn’t in Russia will increase your chances of success and accelerate your business expansion.

Working with intermediaries

A fair amount of European companies still operates through Russian distributors and depending on your company size and finances, this might be the best option for you too.

An alternative is to team up with commercial agents, which works well when it is necessary to interact directly with the end-customers, for fully or semi-customized products for example.

Developing direct sales

Several companies prefer developing direct sales, either by dedicating a Swiss-based sales manager to the country, by working with a Russia-based sales representative on a payroll, or by directly incorporating a subsidiary in Russia with a team.

Direct sales raise transparency and either increase margins or price competitiveness. In the case of a subsidiary, it builds up the needed experience and market knowledge to develop at a later stage neighbouring markets such as CIS countries and the Eurasian Economic Union.

“Russia is not our priority right now”

This might be true for your company, in which case we advise you to consider doing at least two things:

  • Make sure you have assessed the market potential and maturity professionally. We often see companies missing out on opportunities in Russia as they misjudge the market because of stereotypes and other perception bias.
  • Monitor closely market changes; things evolve rapidly in Russia and what was true yesterday might no longer be relevant tomorrow. Join our +1000 subscribers and receive our latest business insights and market flashes.

Your contact in Switzerland

Alain Bourgnon

Representative in North-Western Switzerland

+41 79 392 06 06

Your contact in Russia

Nicolas Waefler Director Swiss Center Samara

Nicolas Waefler


+41 79 512 03 56


Do I need to speak russian?

No, you don’t need to speak Russian to do business in Russia, though this helps a lot! But what you definitely need is to have your documentation translated…

Learn more

— Do I need to speak russian?

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