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Apr 24, 2012

MegaFon deal gives Teliasonera mega-payday

STOCKHOLM/MOSCOW, April 24 (Reuters) – Shareholders in
Russian mobile phone firm MegaFon have agreed a deal
that gives control to the country’s richest man, Alisher
Usmanov, and nets Nordic telecoms firm Teliasonera a
return of over 18 times its original investment.

Tuesday’s deal ends a long-running dispute over strategy and
governance at MegaFon with an agreement to pay out a $5.15
billion dividend to all shareholders, and sees the exit from the
business of Russian billionaire Mikhail Fridman.

Apr 24, 2012

Scania Q1 tops forecast as order fall stabilises

STOCKHOLM, April 24 (Reuters) – Truck maker Scania
painted a brighter picture than expected of demand in its
crisis-hit European market on Tuesday as a fall in orders
stabilised and it rolled out a smaller fall in earnings than

Shares in the group, majority-owned by Volkswagen
, rose nearly 6 percent. The Middle East market
continued to be pummelled by the Arab Spring, it said.

Apr 24, 2012

Russia’s MegaFon to pay dividend, seek IPO

STOCKHOLM/MOSCOW, April 24 (Reuters) – Shareholders in
Russia’s No.2 mobile phone operator MegaFon agreed an
ownership shake-up on Tuesday and confirmed plans for an initial
public offering in London that sources say could raise $4

The ownership reshuffle will hand control to Russia’s
richest man, Alisher Usmanov, as billionaire Mikhail Fridman’s
Altimo exits and Nordic telecoms firm TeliaSonera
sells down its stake, TeliaSonera said in a statement.

Apr 23, 2012

Alfa Laval margins pressured by flat demand

STOCKHOLM, April 23 (Reuters) – Profitability at Alfa Laval
slid to a five-year low in the first quarter, hit by a
shipbuilding slump which kept its production below capacity, and
the engineer warned of flat demand to come.

Alfa’s outlook bucked a more optimistic view for the
engineering sector which followed results last week from
bearings maker SKF, seen as a gauge of industrial

Apr 19, 2012

SKF sees rising demand as Europe woes recede

STOCKHOLM, April 19 (Reuters) – SKF, the world’s
biggest bearings maker, struck an upbeat note for the industrial
sector on Thursday, forecasting rising demand from the United
States and Asia and a more stable Europe after in-line quarterly

The Swedish group, whose products are used in everything
from jets to dishwashers and which is one of the first major
manufacturers to open books on the first quarter, forecast
overall market demand would be slightly higher in the second
quarter versus the first.

Apr 18, 2012

Swedish central bank kills talk of early rate cut

STOCKHOLM, April 18 (Reuters) – Sweden’s central bank
quashed expectations for early rate cuts on Wednesday, keeping
interest rates unchanged and saying they were likely to remain
that way for more than a year.

It saw a glimmer of hope for economic growth that has taken
hits from the debt crisis in the neighbouring euro zone. The
central bank, the Riksbank, has cut rates twice recently in
response to slumping exports.

Apr 16, 2012

Austerity ends 13-year rise in global military spending

STOCKHOLM, April 17 (Reuters) – Budget cuts by wealthy
western countries has ended a 13-year run of rising military
spending in the world, despite big increases by China and
Russia, a study released on Tuesday said.

“The after-effects of the global economic crisis, especially
deficit-reduction measures in the USA and Europe, have finally
brought the decade-long rise in military spending to a halt – at
least for now,” said one of the report’s authors, Sam
Perlo-Freeman of the Stockholm International Peace Research
Institute SIPRI.

Apr 10, 2012

Swedish industry output posts worst fall in 2 years

STOCKHOLM, April 10 (Reuters) – Swedish industrial
production suffered its sharpest fall since 2009 in February,
jarring a reassuringly rosy outlook painted by other recent
economic indicators and calling into question expectations the
central bank will not take rates any lower.

The Nordic country, sheltered by robust public finances, has
so far weathered the downturn spawned by the euro zone debt
crisis with relative ease and recent gauges of economic activity
had pointed to a moderate recovery.

Apr 2, 2012

Ratos sells pest control firm Anticimex to EQT

STOCKHOLM, April 2 (Reuters) – Sweden’s Ratos is
selling pest control firm Anticimex to fellow private equity
group EQT in a deal that valued the company at about 2.9 billion
crowns ($437.05 million), keeping up the steady pace of Nordic

Ratos, which owns 85 percent of Anticimex, said on Monday
that the selling price for 100 percent of the shares amounted to
1.775 billion crowns and that it would book a net exit gain on
the transaction of about 940 million crowns.

Mar 29, 2012

Sweden proposes higher tax on private equity profits

STOCKHOLM, March 29 (Reuters) – Sweden moved to tighten tax
rules for owners of stakes in private equity funds, part of a
push against untaxed profits in the 250 billion crown ($37.5
billion) industry, which is the second biggest in Europe
relative to economic output.

A Finance Ministry proposal aims to tax income of private
equity fund owners, or so called carried interest, primarily at
the income tax rate rather than the capital gains rate which is