RUSAL ready to mull renewed buyback offer from Norilsk Nickel

MOSCOW, Sep 8 (PRIME) — Russian aluminum giant UC RUSAL is ready to consider a renewed buyback offer from Russian metals giant Norilsk Nickel, in which RUSAL owns a blocking stake, Viktor Vekselberg, chairman of the board of directors of RUSAL, said in a letter sent to Norilsk Nickels management seen by PRIME on Thursday.

I am authorized by the board of directors of united company RUSAL to consider offers that reflect the fundamental value of the blocking stake held by RUSAL in Norilsk Nickel, Vekselberg said.

Andrei Bugrov, chairman of Norilsk Nickels board of directors, who received the letter, told PRIME that the matter would be discussed at the companys board meeting.

We need to discuss it We have not prepared and are not preparing any new offers yet, Bugrov said.

RUSALs board unanimously rejected the offer of Norilsk Nickel to buy back a 15% stake in the company from the aluminum giant for U.S. $8.75 billion on Monday.

Russian business daily Kommersant reported Thursday citing sources that almost all shareholders of RUSAL were ready to consider the renewed deal, excluding Oleg Deripaska, CEO and major holder of RUSAL.

A source close to RUSALs shareholders said that the board was not satisfied with the terms and value of the previous deal. Being left with 10% is the same as selling the whole (25%) stake, he said.

Norilsk Nickels other shareholders include Interros, owned by Russian tycoon Vladimir Potanin, which holds 30% in the company, while shareholders of Russian metals holding Metalloinvest hold up to 4%.


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