Correspondent, New York
Megan's Feed
Oct 18, 2012

Rosneft lodges bid for BP stake in TNK-BP -sources

LONDON/MOSCOW, Oct 18 (Reuters) – State oil company Rosneft
tightened its grip on the Russian oil industry on
Thursday, lodging a cash and shares bid for British oil company
BP’s 50 percent stake in the country’s third-largest oil
producer, TNK-BP.

Sources familiar with the actions of BP, Rosneft, their
advisers and financiers said a bid had been submitted to BP that
valued the whole of TNK-BP at over $50 billion. Rosneft has
already made an offer to BP’s partners in the venture.

Oct 16, 2012

Russia launches anti-smoking crackdown

MOSCOW, Oct 16 (Reuters) – Russia launched a crackdown on
smoking on Tuesday with a bill to ban tobacco advertising and
raise taxes on cigarettes to help tackle a public health crisis
in the world’s second largest tobacco market after China.

Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said in a video blog that 44
million Russians, nearly one in three, were hooked on smoking,
and almost 400,000 die every year of smoking-related causes.

Oct 11, 2012

MegaFon seeks IPO investors with governance pledge

MOSCOW, Oct 11 (Reuters) – MegaFon said the make-up of its
board would reflect its focus on good corporate governance, as
it sought to attract investors for its planned initial public
offering (IPO) after Goldman Sachs dropped out as an
underwriter.

The emailed statement came days after Russia’s No.2 mobile
operator revealed the surprise absence of the U.S. investment
bank in the line-up of banks running the deal. Sources had
previously said Goldman would be one of the lead banks.

Oct 9, 2012

Russia’s MegaFon to sell shares in London

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia’s second biggest mobile operator, MegaFon, announced its plan to sell shares in London this year and was expected to raise up to $2 billion from investors seeking a stake in the rapidly growing Russian market.

The initial public offering could value MegaFon at $13 billion and become the biggest by a Russian company since that of internet firm Yandex (YNDX.O: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) last year. MegaFon is controlled by Russia’s richest man, Alisher Usmanov.

Oct 9, 2012

MegaFon says to launch London share sale

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia’s second-largest mobile phone operator MegaFon MGFON.UL, controlled by the country’s richest man Alisher Usmanov, is going ahead with an initial public offering in London that could be the biggest by a Russian company since last year’s flotation of internet firm Yandex (YNDX.O: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz).

The IPO, to be completed this quarter, will give investors the chance to buy into a purely Russian-focused phone company that is outpacing rivals such as Vimpelcom (VIP.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) in a rapidly growing home market.

Sep 28, 2012

Russia’s richest man is out to prove a point

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Alisher Usmanov, the richest man in Russia, is stabbing the air emphatically with his finger.

“With Facebook, people say I took money from the Kremlin,” he declares. “But I invested my own money.”

Sep 28, 2012

Arsenal player sales must stop says Usmanov

MOSCOW (Reuters) – England premier league side Arsenal will not win trophies if they keep selling their best players although manager Arsene Wenger has maintained an atttractive style with a changing squad, Uzbek-born shareholder Alisher Usmanov said.

Arsenal, who have not won any silverware since 2005, lost Dutch striker Robin van Persie to Manchester United (MANU.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) last month for a reported 24 million pounds after Cameroon midfielder Alex Song left for Barcelona in August.

Sep 20, 2012

Profit fall at Russia’s VTB underlines need for capital

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Quarterly earnings at VTB (VTBR.MM: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), Russia’s second-biggest bank, dropped 63 percent due to volatile financial markets and foreign exchange losses, underscoring the importance of its plan to issue new shares to bolster capital.

The state-controlled bank’s capital base has been strained by acquisitions and lending growth, and chief executive Andrei Kostin said on Wednesday it was considering a $2 billion share sale next spring after the successful sale of a $5 billion stake in larger rival Sberbank (SBER.MM: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) this week.

Sep 12, 2012

Russia’s Prokhorov in talks to sell $4 bln Polyus stake

MOSCOW, Sept 12 (Reuters) – Russian tycoon Mikhail
Prokhorov’s Onexim group is in talks with two potential buyers
to sell its near-$4 billion stake in the country’s largest gold
miner, Polyus Gold.

The company’s announcement on Wednesday signals the
abandonment by the businessman-turned-politician of his attempt
to use Polyus as a platform for a global merger, as valuations
of gold miners languish at their lowest in 17 years in relation
to rallying gold prices.

Aug 2, 2012

Media magnate Lebedev may sell Russian assets

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Banker and media magnate Alexander Lebedev said on Thursday he could sell his business assets in Russia after coming under pressure from the Kremlin, adding he feared he might be jailed in a criminal case he regards as politically motivated.

Lebedev also said Russia could face a wave of political repression following a series of moves since Vladimir Putin returned to the presidency on May 7 that opposition leaders have described as a crackdown on dissent.