Moscow exchange to float, could raise $ 500 m

Friday, 25 January 2013 02:04 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

MOSCOW (Reuters): The Moscow Exchange, Russia’s main venue for trading in stocks, bonds, foreign exchange and derivatives, on Monday announced its intention to float on its own platform through the sale of stock expected to be worth at least $ 500 million.

Details of the offering, announced in a statement, were limited but the Moscow Exchange will offer shares to institutional and retail investors in Russia, to offshore investors and qualified institutions in the United States. The statement gave no details on the size of the offering, through which existing shareholders will have the opportunity to sell stock. It could total at least $ 500 million, according to a source familiar with the situation.

The Moscow Exchange was formed in 2011 following the merger of Moscow’s two largest stock exchanges, MICEX and the RTS with a view to a float this year. MICEX-RTS was valued at $ 4.5 billion when the two exchanges combined in a merger billed at the time as creating a ‘one-stop shop’ for trading a full range of financial instruments.

Consolidating Moscow’s markets and upgrading clearing and settlements has been backed by the Kremlin in a bid to turn the Russian capital into a global financial centre and end an exodus by Russian firms floating on foreign exchanges.

The exchange’s largest shareholder is Russia’s central bank, which will retain its 24.3 per cent stake.