Interview with Aleksandr Glazyrin

Aleksandr Glazyrin from Metran Industrial Group located in the city of Chelyabinsk told RT how his company survived the 1990s and became one of the major Russian instrument and automation equipment producers.

Russia Today: Can you tell us about where your company has come from?

A.G.: Our company came from the defence industry in the Chelyabinsk region. The original basis of our company are several rocket plants in Chelyabinsk, and all our specialists are from those plants.

RT: But now you work in the civil sphere making measuring instruments for different industries. How have you managed to overcome the difficulties and get used to working in modern times?

A.G.: We had many difficulties in the 1990s – you know them yourself. I’d like to highlight two of them. First – we had many gaps and uncertainties in the Russian legislation regulating business. In was a difficult task to take correct management decisions. Secondly – in the Soviet Union we had a well-developed machine-building industry. In the 90s there was a complete decline in it. For a company producing measurement instruments or other devices it’s very important to have a good chain of suppliers of mechanical and electronic parts. We didn’t have that in the 90s. It’s a challenge for us even now.

We have re-established contacts with many companies in our region – many of them originate in defence industry as well. Metron also has two international  strategic partners. One of them is American Emerson Electric, with headquarters is in St. Louis. They are a source for new ideas, technical decisions and management techniques for us. Our second strategic partner is Pribor company here in Chelyabinsk, a defence plant. They have reliable traditional technologies, educated and experienced staff, and they are our biggest supplier of mechanical parts and services. It may be an unusual example of cooperation for today’s Russia, but it’s very successful.

RT: What challenges are you facing in the future? Do you have staff problems like many regional companies in Russia?

A.G.: It’s true, we have difficulties with hiring skilled and experienced engineers today. Our headhunters are working on it. We have here in the Chelyabinsk region the South Urals State University – one of the best technical universities in Russia. Many of our employees studied there. We also have strong ties with it – providing laboratory equipment for them for example. I think our staff problem will be resolved in the near future.