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Updated: 12.11.2003

Headquartered in Moscow, Yukos is one of Russia's largest and fastest-growing publicly traded fully integrated petroleum companies and a leader in production, refining, light product yield, and market capitalisation growth in Russia.

Yukos is involved in just about every aspect of the oil industry, from the well head to the filling station. The company's principal production assets are located in the Khanty-Mansiysk Autonomous District and Tomsk Region of Western Siberia and the Samara Region along the Volga River in European Russia.

Recent acquisitions have expanded Yukos' reach into Eastern Siberia and the Yamal Nenetsk Autonomous District in Russian Far North.

Yukos has five principal refineries in Russia, ranging geographically from the Samara Region in the west to Angarsk near Lake Baikal in Eastern Siberia, as well as being the majority owner and operator of the largest refinery in the Baltic States, in Mazeikiai, Lithuania.

The company also runs 18 distribution companies and more than 1,200 filling stations under the Yukos brand name. It currently employs about 100,000 people.

On July 2, 2003, the arrest of the prominent Yukos shareholder Platon Lebedev on charges he had stolen state property in a 1994 privatisation deal gave start to ominous struggle for positioning and power between the Kremlin and Russian oligarchs. It quickly ballooned into l7 hour-long searches of Yukos' company offices by government prosecutors, aided by armed storm troopers wearing masks.

On that one day alone, the company faced a sell-off of shares and a loss of $1.9 billion in its market value, and soon presidential economic adviser Andrei Illarionov was predicting a "new civil war" over the issues.

On October 25, 2003, company's former CEO Mikhail Khodorkovsky was arrested at a Siberian airport by agents of the security police (FSB). Mr Khodorkovsky was flown back to Moscow for questioning and charged with several offences, including tax evasion and defrauding the state out of $1bn. The same day a Moscow court has ordered the head of Yukos to be kept in prison.

Nine days later, on November 3, 2003, Mikhail Khodorkovsky has resigned as chief executive of Yukos. The company's new CEO is Simon Kukes.

Related links:

Yukos corporate site

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