(Bloomberg) -- The commodities-trading arm of Russia’s VTB Group told its staff in Switzerland that the majority of them would lose their jobs, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

About 60 people are employed by VTB Commodities Trading in Zug, Switzerland. Some employees will be retained in order to liquidate any remaining assets, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private.

VTB’s office in Zug began unwinding base-metal trading positions in recent weeks after the bank was targeted with sanctions after the invasion of Ukraine. In the U.K., Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced an asset freeze against all major Russian banks last week including VTB, which has an office in London.

Representatives for VTB didn’t respond to emails seeking comment and couldn’t be reached by phone.

The company has yet to announce which employees will be dismissed, the people said.

VTB expanded its commodity-trading business in recent years hiring metals and oil traders as well as building out its grain-export business.  By 2016, it was trading about 200,000 tons of aluminum a year, and also handled significant volumes of other industrial and precious metals.



©2022 Bloomberg L.P.