Perm (pyĕrm) [key], city (1990 est. pop. 1,090,000), capital of Perm Territory, NE European Russia, on the Kama River. It is a transfer center for rail and river traffic and a major producer of machinery in the Urals industrial region. Perm also has chemical plants and oil refineries. It was founded in 1780 and underwent rapid industrial growth in the 19th cent. Perm was called Molotov from 1940 to 1958. It is the seat of a university.