Investing in Russia since the 1991 collapse of Communism has always attracted a different breed of financier, with the most basic requirement being a cast-iron stomach.
For those brave enough to plunge in however, the rewards can be enormous - to give but one example, Troika Dialog, the oldest and largest private investment bank in the Commonwealth of Independent States, in the early 1990s was producing eye-watering annual rates of return for its subscribers of over 200 percent.
That said, for every Troika Dialog there have been a dozen other ventures that crashed and burned, leaving foreign investors scorched.
But for those with a gambling streak, a new intriguing proposal, if implemented, may produce handsome returns in a most unlikely field - solar power.
Surprisingly to most, Russia has a range of locations suitable for solar power, including large expanses of Siberia and the Russia Far East, as well as the Caucasus. In the last-named region, some local politicians are seeking to establish the North Caucasus in the forefront of solar equipment manufacturing.
During an 23 August meeting, representatives of Stavropol Kray and state officials from the five regions comprising the North Caucasus Federal District (SKFO) pored over a proposal drawn up by the Republic of North Ossetia-Alania to establish a "high technology industrial complex for producing silicon for solar energy applications," giving the Caucasus its very own "Silikon Valleysky."