Russia's Russneft to place 10% of shares on Moex, package valued up to $500mn

By bne IntelliNews June 20, 2016

Russian oil refining company Russneft will place up to 10% of its shares on the Moscow Stock Exchange during the IPO, the owner of the company Mikhail Gutseriev said in an interview with RBC-TV channel on June 19. Gutseriev values the package at between $400mn and $500mn.

If the market confirms this assessment, the billionaire will consolidate all the oil assets of the Gutseriev family on the basis of Russneft, he added. Apart from Russneft, he owns Nephthys, Forte Invest and Global Energy. The consolidated company will be worth $10bn, Gutseriev estimates.

"At first we want to consolidate the assets, and then go for the IPO, but then we made the right decision, in our opinion - to try to enter the market," Gutseriev told the TV station. 

The timing for the share placement is good as the market expects oil prices to rise. However, the value of $4bn-5bn is too high, Vedomosti cited Veles Capital analyst Vasiliy Tanurkov as saying. The whole company is worth a maximum of $2.9bn, Tanurkov said, and if the market values Russneft below Gutseriev's estimation, the IPO is likely to be delayed.

Russneft said earlier that it plans an IPO at the Moscow Stock Exchange in the fourth quarter of 2016. Its reserves amount to nearly 540mn tonnes, with production of 8mn tonnes in 2016, so the company decided to see how much a producer with these metrics is worth, Gutseriev said. Western banks and companies from CIS countries - Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan and Belarus - showed interest in the placement, he added.

Russneft is preparing for the IPO by reducing its debt to $1.3bn. In October 2015, the company's debt was several times higher at $5.3bn. The proceeds from the IPO will be used for further debt reduction, Gutseriev said, assuring that Russneft will remain effective at current oil prices, with production costs being the lowest in the industry. 

The president of Lukoil, Vagit Alekperov, warned in early 2016 that many oil projects in Russia can be closed if the price of oil is below $24 per barrel. But the head of Gazprom Neft, Alexander Dyukov, said his company will increase production even at the price of $18-$20 per barrel.

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