Oligarchs make peace over the world’s largest nickel producer

City A.M. Reporter
NORILSK Nickel named longtime co-owner Vladimir Potanin as its chief executive yesterday under a Kremlin-inspired deal to end a boardroom war at the world’s top nickel and palladium producer.

Roman Abramovich will take control of a 20 per cent voting stake and act as a buffer between Potanin and rival Oleg Deripaska, who owns a share in Norilsk through UC Rusal, the world’s largest aluminium producer.

“When the new lineup of shareholders gets used to each other, confidence will grow that we now feel is now lacking,” Potanin said, paying tribute to the role to be played by Abramovich, an ally of President Vladimir Putin.

Potanin plans to stay for up to two years. The peace deal will last for 10 years. Core shareholders agree to keep their stakes for five.