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Russia's Largest Carmaker Seeks Shareholder Support After Record Loss

Russia’s largest carmaker has called on shareholders to help save it from bankruptcy after reporting a record loss.

AvtoVAZ said on February 12 that its net loss had increased to 74 billion rubles ($930 million) last year, nearly triple the 2014 figure. Sales declined 8 percent, falling below costs.

The company, which makes Lada cars, pledged to target "revenue improvements, cost reduction measures, and sales of non-core assets" as part of an anticrisis plan, but warned that it needs help from shareholders to refinance its debt and secure new loans.

Renault owns 50 percent of AvtoVAZ’s holding company, while the French carmaker’s global partner Nissan Motor holds 17 percent.

Russian car sales plunged 36 percent in 2015 as Western sanctions imposed over Russia’s actions in Ukraine and plunging oil prices weakened the ruble and pushed the economy into recession.

Based on reporting by AFP, dpa, and Bloomberg

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