ST PETERSBURG TIMES
Neste Stations Switch to Citibank ATMs
By Sophia Kornienko
Photo by ALEXANDER BELENKY / SPT
Neste St. Petersburg gas stations will be equipped with Citibank automatic teller machines, replacing the International Moscow Bank ATMs.
Citibank will install 30 cash machines at Neste gas stations by the end of 2004, said Citibank's spokesperson Lyudmila Botsan in a telephone interview Monday. A total of 40 of Citibank's ATMs already successfully operate at British Petroleum stations in Moscow, some of the machines also equipped with web terminals, Botsan said. St. Petersburg will receive simple ATMs, without Internet.
"We offered Neste to equip all of their stations with our ATMs, but they chose a different bank. A different bank's machines will not bother us, as we have our own clients," Delovoi Peterburg quoted head of International Moscow Bank's St. Petersburg branch, Alexander Konyshkov, as saying Friday. "We will not dismantle our cash machines at Neste stations voluntarily. In any case, the network of our cash machines will not shrink. We can transfer our ATMs from Neste stations to other locations within the same districts," Konyshkov told Delovoi Peterburg.
"Our contract with Neste was signed on a fixed number of cash machines. The contract was completed. Neste did not support our proposal of further cooperation," Konyshkov said via e-mail Monday.
The number of International Moscow Bank ATMs will grow, Konyshkov said. The bank plans to install 30 more cash machines in St. Petersburg by the end of 2004, he said.
Just like Citibank, International Moscow Bank is a bank employing foreign capital, so Neste's decision could not have been dictated by the Finnish fuel company's desire to exchange a Russian bank for a Western one, Konyshkov said.
The initiative to install new cash machines at Neste stations came from Citibank, Andrei Karyakin, Citibank's PR manager in Moscow said in a telephone interview Monday.
Besides Neste, Citibank will supply eight cash machines to Shell St. Petersburg gas stations. One more Shell station, which is under construction, will be similarly equipped with a Citibank machine upon completion.
Citibank will open two or three new offices in St. Petersburg before the end of the year, and continue cooperating with Lenta, as the partnership proved to be very efficient, Karyakin said. All of St. Petersburg's Lenta stores are equipped with Citibank's terminals.
Automatic gas stations are considered to be a difficult location for ATM installments, Delovoi Peterburg wrote.
Several of Balt Trade stations are equipped with Sberbank's ATMs. Faeton stations plan to install cash machines in 2005. St. Petersburg Fuel Company announced it will open St. Petersburg Gorodskoi Bank miniature terminals, for cash withdrawals and deposits using VISA and MasterCard, Western Union transfer processing and submitting applications for Visa and MasterCard, Delovoi Peterburg wrote.
News source: times.spb.ru
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