Rosneft reveals $11bn flotation plans


Russian oil firm Rosneft has revealed its plans to raise $11 billion through a flotation on the London and Moscow stock markets.

If the state-backed energy company, Russia's third-largest, succeeds in raising the initial public offering (IPO) price it desires, the flotation would be the largest seen on the London stock exchange for at least five years.

A Rosneft flotation from London is being opposed by rival firm Yukos, which was forced to sell a major asset to its competitor last year. Although unlikely to prevent the IPO the protestations of Yukos could inhibit the overall share price Rosneft achieves, an effect it is attempting to limit by beginning a series of roadshows selling the company to potential investors.

"We see great interest in the transaction and have already received requests for a substantial share of the offering, including from several large strategic players," Rosneft's chief executive, Sergei Bogdanchikov, said.

"We look forward to meeting with investors over the coming weeks and in the future becoming one of the world's largest publicly traded energy companies."

Rosneft's decision to raise large amounts of capital has been driven more by necessity than design, although its insistence on its expansionist outlook remains justified.

The firm has to pay off a $7.5 billion debt lent by a European consortium which allowed it to buy a ten per cent stake in Gazprom, Russia's main oil company, earlier this year.

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