At the change of epochs the country was in a bustle, an old system was crashing giving place to the new one. The life itself provided an opportunity to people with pro-active attitude and organizing skills to take advantage of the favorable situation. A new market and new market relations were emerging.
The country rejected the idea of building communism and planned economy. The government announced a shift to capitalist relations, free market and private property.
Russia has always been rich in talented people ready for undertaking an independent business. In the time of changes, remarkable in every extent, self-bestowed people came in full force. Vostok-1 Fishing Collective Farm was established thanks to the opportunity, beyond the limits and bans of the socialist times, to demonstrate professional competence, leadership potential and ability to pull people together not by slogans, but by everybody’s interest in the outcome of his or her job, and material incentives first of all.
In 1991, in spite of the lack of legal framework, we realized that the new times had come, and new opportunities had emerged. We were allowed to think independently and, what is more important, to work on our own, make independent decisions and do our business to achieve our professional and managerial potential.
The next year, 1992, was disappointing for the Far East fishermen. The former Soviet banking system was in the midst of a crisis. Foreign Trade Bank turned bankrupt, and all the foreign currency deposits appeared to be frozen. Fishing companies lost the funds they used to purchase foreign equipment, provisions and fuel. The science suffered hard ships either. Ministry of Fisheries tightened up appropriations for scientific expeditions and research. Newly born Vostok-1 was the only one to come out of the difficult situation with credit and managed to help its partner TINRO by funding the payroll for two thousand people in the period from April to October 1992.
In 1992 company management used simple but highly effective tools and relied on the leased vessel crews’ interest in the overall outcome to arrange fishing expeditions within a year for gravid Alaska pollack, cod, live and frozen crab and live sea urchin, and raised considerable funds.
The expeditions and annual program 1992 were performed by 49 Russian vessels and 8 foreign mother factories. Vostok-1 paid to all the leased fleets in time and at full.
Here again, a human factor played a crucial part. The professionals did not have to look out for anyone; they were able to translate the possibility into action, so they took the initiative. No doubt, fair relations with partners were essential. By the way, mission statement of Vostok-1 Fishing Collective Farm is “Keep faith”. All in all, the efforts laid a solid foundation for future success of the young company.
Modern fleet has always been a key component of a success for any fishing company. Therefore, Vostok-1 held a course for purchasing its own vessels.