Russian telecoms giant Euroset plans to raise £600m through London flotation

 
Steve Dinneen
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RUSSIAN telecoms giant Euroset plans to raise up to $1bn (£600m) through a London initial public offering (IPO) later this year.

The firm, which is part-owned by Russian telecoms group Vimpelcom, said billionaire Russian businessman Alexander Mamut will sell down his 50.1 per cent controlling stake, as well as offering ordinary shares in the form of global depostary receipts.

Mamut has been linked with a takeover of struggling music retailer HMV, in which he holds 6.1 per cent.

Euroset made a net profit of 5.6bn roubles (£121m) last year on revenue of 62bn roubles. The firm was co-founded by the business tycoon Yevgeny Chichvarkin who fled to Britain to escape charges of extortion and kidnapping in 2008. Chichvarkin said in January that Russia had dropped the criminal case but said he would not return to the country, fearing fresh charges.

Alfa Capital, Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs and VTB Capital are acting as joint bookrunners.

Russian companies were queuing up to launch public offerings at the start of the year but three consecutive failures to get desired pricing put the trend on ice.

Russian agricultural company Rusagro said last week it will push ahead with a $300m (£183m) London IPO to test investor appetite, while construction firm Etalon Group started pre-marketing yesterday.

MEET THE ADVISERS

SIMON AIRD

CREDIT SUISSE

Heading up the advisory team for Credit Suisse is Simon Aird. He is a senior managing director in the EMEA equity syndicate group.

The 40-year-old banker is responsible for new issue execution and corporate trading, reporting to Tom Ahearne, head of EMEA equity syndicate.

He joined Credit Suisse in 2000 in London and transferred to Hong Kong in 2003. During his time in Asia, he oversaw over 200 equity capital market transactions, including IPOs for ICBC, China Life and China Construction Bank.

He has been quoted as saying China is the second most important IPO market after the US.

He was involved in the advisory team for aluminium giant Rusal’s IPO listing on the Hong Kong stock exchange, the first such move for a Russian firm.

He also advised the Harbinger Capital Partners Special Situations Fund last month on its decision to sell its remaining 14 per cent holding of ordinary shares in Inmarsat.

Also acting as joint bookrunners are Alfa Capital, Goldman Sachs and VTB Capital.