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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Business in Brief

Norilsk to Get $3.5Bln Loan

Norilsk Nickel will get a $3.5 billion loan from a group of banks this month to finance the purchase of Canadian miner LionOre Mining International, Interfax said Tuesday, citing an unidentified banker in Moscow.

Norilsk will not need to borrow more than that, even though it is offering 6.8 billion Canadian dollars ($6.42 billion) in cash for LionOre, the agency said. Norilsk outbid Xstrata for LionOre last month. (Bloomberg)

Nissan's St. Petersburg Plant

ST. PETERSBURG -- Nissan Motor, Japan's second-largest carmaker, will start building a $200 million car plant in St. Petersburg on June 24, after signing a deal a year ago with the Economic Development and Trade Ministry, an industry source said.

Nissan plans to produce 50,000 cars per year by 2009 at its first Russian plant for the nation's booming car market. (Reuters)

Fortum Power Stake Cut

Lenenergo, the St. Petersburg-based electricity distribution company, plans to sell additional shares to reduce Fortum's stake and form a venture with the government of the city.

Officials from Fortum, the city administration and Lenenergo will discuss the size and price of the share sale and the future ownership structure, Alexander Chistyakov, first deputy chief of Federal Grid Company, said Tuesday. They will meet during this weekend's St. Petersburg economic forum, he said. (Bloomberg)

Sistema Could Double Value

Sistema should almost double in value to $25 billion, Vedomosti reported Tuesday, citing billionaire owner Vladimir Yevtushenkov.

Sistema controls wireless operator Mobile TeleSystems and also has assets in mass media, banking, technology, real estate and oil. It has a market capitalization of $13.3 billion at Monday's prices. (Blooomberg)

Gazprom Neft Net Increases

Gazprom's oil arm increased 2006 profit 31 percent to $3.66 billion from $2.8 billion the previous year, the company said in a statement Tuesday.

Sales rose 38 percent to $20.2 billion in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles, Gazprom Neft said. (Bloomberg)

Azeris See Gas Boost

BAKU, Azerbaijan -- Azerbaijan will boost gas output to 16 billion cubic meters in 2008 from 12 bcm this year and increase exports of the fuel to Europe, the country's president, Ilham Aliyev, said Tuesday.

"Azeri state [oil and gas] firm Socar will double gas output to 8 bcm in 2008. The Shakh-Deniz field operated by BP may give the same output," Aliyev told a conference, referring to the fields in the Caspian Sea. "These volumes will not only allow Azerbaijan to cover all its needs in the fuel, but also raise exports to Europe." (Reuters)

Securitization Sector Booms

Russia's structured finance market grew 17-fold last year to reach a value of $3.4 billion, Moody's said in a report to be released Wednesday.

By the end of May 2007, Moody's tallied $1.48 billion in securitizations of various asset types, including consumer loans, auto loans and future flows.

Moody's rated 21 securitizations in the report. All of them received investment grade ratings except Rosbank's credit card voucher transaction, which closed in 2004, and the Chuvashia republic's debt repackaging. (MT)

Novolipetsk Pays Dividends

Novolipetsk Iron & Steel, the country's fourth-biggest steelmaker, will pay 18 billion rubles ($700 million) in dividends for last year, the company said in a statement Tuesday.

The company will offer stockholders 3 rubles (12 cents) per share, including interim payments, which is the same as the dividends for 2005. (Bloomberg)

Cherkizovo Stakes Changed

Bank Vozrozhdenie, one of the country's leading mortgage lenders, increased its stake in Cherkizovo Group, the country's largest meat producer, almost fivefold, the lender said Tuesday.

Vozrozhdenie raised its stake from 2.4 percent to 11.43 percent, the lender said. Vozrozhdenie net income rose 61 percent last year to $30.4 million on demand for loans from consumers and small businesses. The bank, which is 43 percent owned by management, raised $54 million last year in a share sale. (Bloomberg)

Transneft's Bond Organizers

Pipeline monopoly Transneft has picked Goldman Sachs, Citi and UBS as organizers of a five-year dual tranche benchmark eurobond, a banking source said Tuesday.

The bond will be denominated in dollars and euros. The roadshow will start in London on Thursday and then head to Paris, Munich, Frankfurt and Amsterdam to finish in New York from June 13 to 14. (Reuters)

Rolf Picks Bookrunners

The country's largest car dealer, Rolf Group, has picked ABN Amro and Citi as joint bookrunners for its debut eurobond, a banking source said Tuesday.

The bond will have a maturity of three to five years. Rolf has 13 dealer centers in Moscow and St. Petersburg and sells Mitsubishi, Hyundai, Ford, Audi, Mazda, Mercedes and Peugeot vehicles. (Reuters)

Prominvestbank Gets Loan

LONDON -- Prominvestbank, the third-largest Ukrainian bank by assets, has increased the amount of loans it will borrow to $100 million because of demand from investors.

The Ukraine-based bank's one-year loan, which is being arranged by Deutsche Bank and ING Group, was raised from the initial amount of $60 million, the banks said Tuesday. (Bloomberg)

U.S. Seeks Help on N. Korea

SEOUL, South Korea -- The United States asked Russia to help resolve a banking dispute that has stalled North Korea's nuclear disarmament process, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Tuesday.

The North has refused to take steps to implement a February agreement to shut down its nuclear reactor until it receives some $25 million in funds that had been frozen at a Macau bank for alleged complicity in counterfeiting and money laundering by Pyongyang. (AP)

Telenor Lawsuit Rejected

VimpelCom said the Supreme Arbitration Court on Tuesday ruled in its favor in a legal battle with its shareholder Telenor over expansion in Ukraine.

The court upheld the decision of VimpelCom's shareholder meeting to buy Ukrainian Radio Systems, Ukraine's fourth-largest cellular operator, said Yelena Prokhorova, a spokeswoman at VimpelCom.

"This can only be seen as a defeat for the rights of all minority shareholders and the rule of law in Russia," said Jan Edvard Thygesen, executive vice president of Telenor. (Bloomberg)