Polymetal in debut day on London exchange

RUSSIA’S fourth biggest gold miner Polymetal was yesterday officially admitted to the London Stock Exchange after switching from a Moscow listing.

The move follows a £491m share placing that values the company at £3.55bn. The placing was priced at £9.20 – the bottom of the range that was set between £9.10 and £10. Sources said the float was 50 per cent oversubscribed.

Polymetal’s stock closed six per cent higher, at 930p, yesterday. Alexander Nesis will see his family retain a 19 per cent stake of the company he founded.

Polymetal, which is also Russia’s largest raw silver miner, has secured the listing without any need for exemptions to be given on corporate governance rules.

Numerous other Russian floats have stalled in recent months, including Polyus Gold, a rival Russian gold miner.

On Monday Russian potash miner Uralkali said it is also considering a full stock market listing in London next year as one of several options for improving shareholder value, but first needs to improve its corporate governance standards.

Nesis is also a 12.16 per cent owner of Uralkali, according to Uralkali’s website, making him the second-biggest shareholder behind Suleiman Kerimov.

He said: “London is the financial capital of the world alongside New York. If the FTSE 100 was just British, it would mean losing business.”

Russian tycoon Alexander Mamut and Czech investor PPF also own stakes in Polymetal.

A total of 47 Russian companies have their shares traded on London’s main market, the vast majority of which are in the form of global depositary receipts, effectively a certificate of foreign ownership of a Russian domestic share.

Moving to a premium listing requires a significant free float and more exacting standards of corporate governance, but brings with it access to additional tracker funds which follow the index.

HSBC and Morgan Stanley were acting as joint global co-ordinators on the deal with VB Capital and Collins Stewart also advising.