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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Investors in Approach Over Yukos

Western investors who bought a Yukos firm that is the subject of a protracted legal battle in the Netherlands contacted former Yukos managers who claim effective control over the firm and sought their agreement to take it over, the Financial Times reported Friday.

Daniel Feldman and David Godfrey said the investors had called them before Dutch-registered Yukos Finance BV was sold in a Russian bankruptcy auction last month and made it clear that they had an arrangement with state oil firm Rosneft, the newspaper said.

Rosneft CEO Sergei Bogdanchikov last week denied that his company was interested in Yukos Finance assets.

U.S. firm Monte Valle paid $305 million for Yukos Finance, which holds $1.5 billion from the sale of a Lithuanian refinery and a 49 percent stake in Slovak pipeline operator Transpetrol.

Investors behind Monte Valle include Renaissance Capital vice chairman Bob Foresman and president of U.S. hedge fund VR Capital Richard Deitz, a former head of fixed income at Renaissance. Foresman and Deitz approached Godfrey, Feldman and former Yukos CFO Bruce Misamore days before the auction, and Feldman said Foresman told him, "[If] we can work out a compromise, you can come back and work in Russia," the newspaper said.

Tim Osborne, director of Yukos shareholder GML, said Deitz also contacted him. "We are happy to talk to anybody reasonable as long as we are getting paid in full," he said.