Home News Our news Interview of General Director JSC “Proletariy” Kovtunov Nikolay to newspaper “Bryansk facts”

Interview of General Director JSC “Proletariy” Kovtunov Nikolay to newspaper “Bryansk facts”

Ковтунов Николай Викторович - ген.директор АО ПролетарийKovtunov Nikolay Viktorovich – general director of JSC “Proletariy” remembers that day very well. There was only clean sheet of paper in front of him. Who can think that it will give the future for about 170 families. It will touch almost one thousand people!  
- Everything began from small thing – Nikolay Viktorovich Kovtunov remembers.
- We sketched at standard sheet of paper draw of department which we dreamt to build. It is a great idea it is like the mill in the mill. It looked at the drawing very attractive. But one thing is to draw and the other thing is to do its reality. Even for  such big factory “Proletariy” it was not easy.  

To build a new department for corrugated production for two years became for the mill the task number one. General director of town-forming enterprise “Proletariy” Nikolay KOVTUNOV told us about difficulties which we had on the way to the dream, changing of the specialists and one hundred salaries.
- To think about construction of new department we were caused by unpleasant event, - Nikolay Viktorovich told.  
- It was a tragedy in the department: a young worker was cut a leg. This event made us do a choice: to close the department and to leave more 170 people without job and think something better. It was useless to update new equipment it is the same as last century. But it was not easy to destroy the old building to construct a new one. The department took two football fields. It is not easy to destroy it carefully!
It was a tragedy in the department: a young worker was cut a leg. This event made us do a choice: to close the department and to leave more than 170 people without job and think something better. It was useless to update new equipment it is like to return last century. But to destroy the old building and to build a new one was not easy. In order to understand the size better – the size of the department was two football fields. It is not easy to destroy it carefully!
- Last time it is fashionable to speak about environment protection. But majority thinks about ecology only  in words. We demonstrated on the mill how it looks in fact, not in word…
- When we dismantle old walls we had the whole pyramid of waste. It was possible to transport it to waste dump but you can imagine how many years this mountain of waste will dissolve! We decided to spend more force… Metal scrap gave and the walls were milled intro breakstones and sold to other companies. “Miratorg” took almost everything.
At the result we not only got rid of big amount of waste but also we got money from it. We almost compensate dismantling of the department.  
- There is unique equipment in new corrugated department which was opened some months ago. There is no   analog in Russia. Even loans you take in foreign banks…
- Equipment installed in the departments is German. Companies “VOITH” and “BHS” are the manufactures number one in the world at the market of paper industry. Before to buy the equipment I personally went to Germany many times. I remember when we equipped the previous department it was not so easy. Nobody knew us, the loans were not given at good conditions, and somebody did not want to speak to us. We saved one year and half to change the equipment in paper department. As the family save money to buy a car like the mill saved down payment for the equipment. We changed the line by parts. When we began cooperate closely with company “Voith” the company suggested to help us to take the loan in Germany. The loan was given by big bank located in Baden-Wurttemberg Germany. Among its clients the company with global name: “Mercedes”, “Siemens”, “Porsche” … In order to get a loan in this bank it is necessary to keep the books so nobody will smell a rat. It is necessary to give the statements both Russian and European, international standards. But the first loan we took on 2% per annum! The next loan – 1,2% per annum and not at 10 or 12% as in Russian banks.
But most of all I was surprised by another. Our national banks do the following: they give money and wait their returning and they do not think about other things. Some years ago one event happened which I can’t remember. We had just taken the loan and Russia Sanctions came. And the problems began. The supplier began to delay the equipment. And at that moment the bank interfere and took our side. It required delivering the equipment at the mill immediately. After this event the problem was solved very quickly.
- Do closely connections with foreigners the result of your business trips abroad?  You often visit foreign mills, take the best and use at your mill. What was impressed you abroad most of all?
- About month and half per year I spend abroad. Of course it is not entertaining trip, it is only business trips. I was in Holland, German, and China… Do you know what my photos in the phone about? It is photos from foreign mills. Everything what can be used at our mill – workshops, equipment. For example at big paper mill in Holland I was attracted by … stairs. They were not plain as usually but finned with small brows. I thought it would be a good idea to install such stairs at our mill, it is a  good safety from injuries. And in Germany every time I was impressed by relations between people there. It is regardful. You respect me and I respect you. The conversation there is strict to those who does not care about people around: huge penalties and prison.
- I vied miniature of the mill for a long time and suffered from curiosity. There are two workshops at the plan number two and three. I could not find number one. Where is it? It is so tiny and we did not show it at miniature. This is a tiny addition to new department. It is only this part which was not dismantled during rebuild and kept it. There is only one machine! You will be surprised more when you know that this machine is … 100 years. I can add: this is exactly that old machine which produces almost 100% of special board in Russia. We are the only one in the country who produces electrical insulating board. It endures till 10000 volt. It is a unique product that even the Germans visiting factory could not suggest instead of it anything better. During last 100 years the technology almost did not change! That is why we fully repaired the machine and kept in operation. Why to look for welfare from welfare?
In real life the products of “Proletariy” surrounds you everywhere: from match box to pan for apples. It is used for curve of suits and box from cheese, on construction walls and boxes for transfer of products. Consumers of mill’s products such big companies as group “GAS”, PAO “KamaZ”, publishing house “EKSMO”, “United match company” and many others.
You can enter to any book shop and books in our binding will surround you. Almost 100% of hard covers for books made in Russia are done in Surazh. If earlier we produced about 300 ton of this product but now it is 3500 ton per month. Almost all trucks transporting the board to Russian printing-offices go from “Proletariy”.
He has one more flair. It is special liner board which is used for production of gypsum board. It is produced by company “Knauf” and “Proletariy”. Only two mills in Russia have the technology for its production. This technology is specific. The board with gypsum is dried within extreme temperatures till 300?C. Superhigh requirements are presented to this product. It must have special air permeability and humidity resistance, it must actually repel water. Every time we do trials. For example, on interesting test. We can do from moisture resistance board small boxes and fill in water there on 3500 seconds. If for 60 seconds board does not get wet anywhere and does not dampen, it means it is good. We do not have the right to make a mistake. If there is one crack in this board I will have to broke the whole lot.  
- Today many big companies their social obligations. They will help some school or kindergarten and inform about it to everybody proudly. It is surprise that the factory repair the hospital on internal resources! Do you have extra money?
- I faced personally with the problems of central hospital. My mother was ill seriously and stayed in surgery. To say the conditions there were bad it means to say nothing, they were awful. There is no anything, there is no shower. What is why when we met with the governor, we spoke about hospital. We decided that everyone will help: the mill will repair at our own expense surgery department and “Ambulance department” and the region will buy modern equipment. I do not consider that we did a favour for our district. It was spoken the hospital to close. The staff of the mill also goes to this hospital. Vice versa it is necessary to widen the hospital, then it will be easier for us to take care about our relatives. Sometimes it happens a tight corner. Some of the workers caught a cold seriously, he did not go to the hospital and at the result he got pneumonia. At the end he had to go to the hospital. But there he was told there is no necessary medicine. And the person came at the New Year’s Eve you know the work at this time. We had to send him to the hospital to Gomel urgently. He recovered for 13 days there. If there are good conditions in our hospital, he will be recovered here.
- Will you have own neighborhood health center very soon?
- We should do neighborhood health center almost from nothing. There were only walls, half-ruined brickwork with windows and doors. Now you can’t recognize the center! We plan to invite therapeutic and cardiologist, we need them most of all. In order to invite clever specialists we suggested the salary till one hundred rub. And there are not many specialists who want to arrive here from Bryansk where there are a lot of entertainments and well-developed infrastructure.
  -There is one more question which worries both factory and people. It is bridge, its absence. A lot of trucks damage the road and make a noise. How will this problem be solved?
- The factory almost stands on the isle! Moving of the trucks is limited with two bridges. They can’t pass all cars, there are traffic jams. Moving traffic is huge. In some days about 75 trucks with raw material arrive at “Proletariy” and the same amount of trucks leave with final product! The trucks have to go via streets including central streets. There is no other way to the mill. Our workers live there. Do you think they like to hear noise even at night? At the same time people understand that their prosperity depends on shipment the products and they have to put up with it. There is an endless circle. We would take part in solving this problem with pleasure including investments. We did the proposal to district administration several times but it is in vain. We suggested doing by-way in accessible area but there is a new park and a monument installed there. Maybe it will be necessary… So, we are waiting a decision. I can repeat: we will not stay aside from the construction.
- There is an interesting gossip. The owners of the mill sold their houses and bought the houses in the country near Surazh? They live closer to the factory to control. Is it true?
- It is true but only half of it. There is a village where the management lives. It is a small area near the village Ivanov. There are five houses. Our shareholders live there in order to stay closer to the mill.  I live there too. But there are no any houses in Spain. We lived in flats in Surazh and now in the village five kilometers from Surazh. Wooden houses, field and forest around. I know about this gossip - houses abroad. Some our shareholders had to cure not only in Surazh but far away from it. We need to tow to these people. In 90th they bring the factory on their shoulders and damage their health. Thanks to the shareholders the equipment at the factory kept, I had it to work with. The factory lives on these patriots. If such people stay, it is possible not to worry about the future of the mill.
According to the material “Bryansk facts”

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