London listings

By Ben Aris of bne in Moscow

Unless you live in Moscow and are in the retail business, you probably haven’t heard of Moskovsky Kreditni Bank (Credit Bank of Moscow, in English). But you may soon. A top-20 Russian bank, CBM is joining the increasingly long line of Russian companies that want to IPO on London’s stock exchange.

“We are contemplating an IPO, but have not decided on specific timing or plans,” CBM’s CEO, Vladimir Chubar, tells bne in an exclusive interview. “It depends on if the market improves, as the current valuation levels for Russian banks are not necessarily attractive. We are still growing, we have one of the lowest cost/income ratios and the return on equity of about 18-20% is one of the best in the sector. We feel like we are still quite a young bank and will wait for the right window of opportunity to open.” Read more

Ouch. After a $1.1bn London IPO last month that had investors queueing up, Russian credit card company TCS will be feeling a bit sore on Friday. It’s GDRs, which had traded as high as $19 following the $17.50 float, have dropped dramatically on Friday – down over 40 per cent at one point, and trading down 26 per cent at time of writing at $11.50. Read more

Russian IPOs have slowed of late. In contrast to 2007, when 32 Russian businesses listed on stock exchanges around the world, just five companies have floated in 2013.

Tinkoff Credit Systems, a credit card company, is the latest. It is the first to choose the London Stock Exchange this year as its place of trading. (Alrosa, the state diamond miner, intends to float but on the Moscow Exchange.) Read more

Shares in London-listed Essar Energy rallied 3.5 per cent by 10am on Monday, after the Anglo-Indian oil and power group posted financial figures that beat market forecasts. Read more

Zenith Bank, Nigeria’s second largest bank by market share, has successfully listed on the London Stock Exchange on Thursday. The bank has listed 125m global depository receipts – but the move is not capital raising, as the bank has bought back shares in Nigeria to make the move.

So why the switcheroo? And what does it say about listing in Nigeria? Read more

The Moscow Exchange is planning to float shares on its own platform in an initial public offering that will fly the flag for Russia’s principal stock trading venue.

By opting for an exclusively domestic listing, the exchange hopes to boost the appeal of Moscow as a financial center and encourage more Russian companies to forgo the attractions of the London Stock Exchange and go public at home. Read more

By Ben Aris of bne

Viatchslav Zarenkov must have building in his bones. Once a construction worker himself, Zarenkov founded Etalon Group, Russia’s leading residential developer, 25 years ago in St Petersburg during Perestroika, making him a pioneer of Russia’s private sector. Now it is something of a favourite of investors looking for exposure to Russia’s emerging middle class.

Etalon, which in April 2011 listed on the main board of the London Stock Exchange raising $575m, is the biggest residential developer in the north west of Russia. It concentrated first on Zarenkov’s hometown of St Petersburg, but more recently has moved down to work in the Russian capital. Read more

IGSS Rosneft oil field SiberiaEnergy-related stocks aren’t just about selling oil and gas – you have to find the stuff in the first place. For investors looking for exposure to the Russian market, IG Seismic Services this week listed global depostitary receipts on the London Stock Exchange. However, it’s also a matter of finding the right price – and someone to trade with.

On launch, things were a little quiet, to say the least – there was no trading on Wednesday. The first trade was on Thursday afternoon for 100 GDRs at $20 – giving the company a guideline market cap of $208m. This is a company with over half the Russian surveying market. So why the lack of investor action? Read more

A tense stock market debut for Megafon and its underwriters finished with the Russian telecoms company’s London-listed global depository receipts closing at $19.60, just below the $20-a-share IPO price. An embarrassment but not a disaster.

As the chart (below the jump) shows, the GDRs threatened to drop through the $19.50 level that the underwriting banks seemed to be defending – and on one occasion touched $19.45. Unless global market conditions stage an unexpected recovery, the stock looks likely to remain under pressure. Read more

Tullow Oil, the London-listed oil exploration company, has made another Kenyan discovery to go with the finds in the country earlier in 2012 – but investors were hardly impressed, sending the shares down nearly 2 per cent, mainly on the depth of the oil.

The company announced on Monday that it had found oil at the Twiga South-1 well, which it owns 50-50 with Africa Oil. But it encountered only 30m of net pay (the thickness of the oil reservoir), a far cry from the earlier Kenyan find of 100m. Read more

Nigeria might be trying to lure local companies into listing on its stock exchange, with flotation activity set to increase – but it’s not the only one. London is stepping up its efforts too for listings in tandem. Read more

Megafon, the Russian mobile operator hoping to list in London, has come up with strong earnings for the third quarter. Net profit jumped 19.6 per cent to Rb14.9bn, while revenue rose 12.3 per cent year-on-year to Rb71.2bn.

The company announced in October that it would hold off its planned IPO until after third quarter results. Yet at this point the chance of a 2012 IPO going ahead seems to have little to do with today’s results, and everything to do with the UK regulator. Read more

So MD Medical Group got away. But Promsvyazbank has not. The latest Russian London IPO has bit the dust after the shareholders decided they couldn’t get a decent price.

As the FT reported, the planned $400m offer was pulled late on Monday after a difficult month for Russian shares, which has seen the Micex index fall 5 per cent from its recent mid-September peak. Read more

Another Russian equity offering gets away smoothly in London – good for Russia and for the City.

Offered at $12, MD Medical Group’s global depositary receipts rose on Friday to trade around 2 per cent up on their first morning. The company’s $311m offer was a modest morsel for the market in comparison with the $5.1bn heavyweight share sale carried out last month by Sberbank, Russia’s biggest bank. But it shows that, with the right company at the right price, investors are ready to buy Russia. Read more

Shares in Bumi plc soared on Thursday on a surprise offer from the Bakrie family to split from the company, buy out its assets and return things, more or less, to where they were before they teamed up last year with British financier Nat Rothschild.

The 29 per cent leap to 240p means the shares have doubled since their all-time low of 119.5p last month, when the market was hit by claims of financial irregularities. But shareholders are still left staring at heavy losses: the shares peaked last year at £14 and spent most of 2011 above £10 (the initial deal price) before the Bakries and Rothschild fell out. Read more

Who’d want to be in the platinum mining business at the moment? On Monday, Stuart Murray, chief executive of Aquarius Platinum, resigned. While the company statement gave no specific reason and Aquarius denied any connection, it’s hard not to see the violent unrest that has rocked the industry as part of the picture.

Shares in the world’s fourth-biggest platinum miner fell 6 per cent in London, having already been battered for most of 2012. Read more

By Ben Aris of business new europe

Russia’s leading private healthcare company MD Medical Group is hoping to cash in on growing enthusiasm for Russian equity with an October IPO to raise more than $150m, which it will use to continue its rapid expansion.

MDMG plans a London listing in October in two parts. A $150m primary issue of 30 per cent of the company as global depositary receipts will be offered. There will also be a secondary issue of existing shares at the same time, the size of which has yet to be decided, but could be “significant,” according to a source close to the deal. Read more

After a bidding war that has gone on almost all year, Shell has on Monday stepped out of the bidding war for Cove Energy. Which means the winner of the battle for the London-listed company is PTT of Thailand. The market was expecting a showdown, with shares opening on Monday at 278 pence, but as soon as Shell threw in the towel, they plunged and closed 14 per cent down at PTT’s offer price. Read more

Aburizal Bakrie, billionaire head of the Bakrie GroupIndonesia’s Bakrie Group has bitten the bullet. On Tuesday the debt-laden family-run Indonesian conglomerate announced a $1bn plan to sell half its stake in London-listed Bumi, its coal venture with financier Nathaniel Rothschild, to Borneo Lumbung Energi, an Indonesian rival.

Bakrie has had to sell a chunk of its crown jewels to avoid defaulting on $1.35bn in loans,  after refinancing talks with commodity trader Glencore fell through. Investors’ early take is that the deal is risky for Borneo (BORN:JKT) – the stock plunged 15 per cent -  but acceptable for minority shareholders in Bumi (BUMI:LSE), which opened just 0.2 per cent down. Read more