Forwarding Agency of the State Paperstock was founded by the decree of Emperor Alexander I in Saint-Petersburg in the autumn of 1818. The enterprise was established to organize the production of banknotes secure from counterfeiting in Russia. The foundation for its future prosperity was laid in the very beginning of the construction of the new facility. A distinguished engineer and architect August Betancour created a unified manufacturing complex that integrated all stages of banknotes production – starting from sheet formation up to design development and subsequent printing. This innovation, unique for its time, makes Goznak (this is how the enterprise has been called since 1919) competitive even today, almost two centuries after. The Forwarding Agency was fast acknowledged as a front-line manufacturing facility of its time, and then became the best Russia paper and polygraphic enterprise of the second half of the 19th - beginning of the 20th century.
The technical solutions proposed and realized in the 19th century by the Forwarding Agency specialists still have an impact on the technology of banknote manufacturing. It was in the Forwarding Agency where the first galvanoplastic workshop was opened, the first Russian postmarks and postcards were printed, and the first device for detection of counterfeits was developed.
After the 1917 revolution in Russia, the printing capacities of the Forwarding Agency were relocated to Moscow. The paper division remained in Petrograd (future Saint Petersburg).
In 1919 the Forwarding Agency was reorganized into the Administration of Factories for Storing of State Papers - Goznak. In the course of time, Goznak combined paper and security printing factories as well as coin and medal minting facilities.
Today Federal State Unitary Entreprise Goznak is an innovative company that has preserved and developed the traditions of the Forwarding Agency and appears as one of the world’s leading companies in manufacturing of banknote and security paper, banknotes and security printing products, coin and medal production.
The company incorporates eight branches:
Saint-Petersburg Paper Mill (founded in 1818 as the Forwarding Agency);
Krasnokamsk Paper Mill (founded in 1936);
Moscow Printing Factory (founded in 1919);
Perm Printing Factory (founded in 1964);
Moscow Printing Works (founded in 1946);
Saint-Petersburg Mint (founded in 1724, incorporated into Goznak in 1941);