Citigroup Buy Swells Yandex Jump To 78%: Russia Overnight

UPDATE 4-Russia to cut stake in diamond miner Alrosa

Alrosa declined to comment, though in May CEO Fyodor Andreev put the value at between $9 billion and $15 billion. The target valuation is between 38-44 roubles per share, said another banking source, and 40-47 roubles per share, according to a separate banking source. This would put the stake sale in a $1.4-1.8 billion range. Alrosa’s shares rose 6 percent to 38.5 roubles on Wednesday. “The asset is unique – at the moment Alrosa has no direct peers among public companies,” Barclays Capital analyst Vladimir Sergievsky said. De Beers, Alrosa’s most direct competitor, delisted in 2001 and is now 85 percent owned by Anglo. “Investors who buy Alrosa shares will get exposure to the consumer sector, which is unusual for mining companies. Demand should be good.” Analysts also point to a positive outlook for diamond prices in the longer term, with demand expected to outpace supply towards the end of this decade, as existing mines age with new deposits unlikely. The last major mine was discovered in 1997. The roadshow ahead of the sale is expected to start around Oct. 14, with the deal set to close by the end of the month. Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan, Morgan Stanley and VTB Capital are joint global coordinators and joint bookrunners for the offering. Renaissance Capital is a joint bookrunner. Following the sale, Russia’s federal and regional governments will own 43.9 percent and 25 percent respectively. A STRATEGIC ASSET Alrosa’s main assets are located in Yakutia in Russia’s Far East, a remote region of tundra and forest, and the country’s largest province, also a repository of large deposits of natural resources from oil and gas to gold and coal.

Mail.ru was also added to Citigroups focus list for the region. Mail.ru added 0.9 percent to $39.34 in London yesterday, the highest level since May 8, 2012, and traded at 25 times estimated earnings. The company has been trading at a discount to Yandex since March, the data show. Totally Unjustified The discount is totally unjustified, Alexander Vengranovich, an analyst at Otkritie Financial Corp. in Moscow, said by phone from Moscow yesterday. There should be no discount and Mail.ru has a chance to catch up. It looks more attractive to investors because its cheaper and because it is expected to pay a special dividend following sale of stakes in Facebook and Qiwi. Vengranovich cut his recommendation on Yandex to a hold July 29 and reiterated a buy on Mail.ru in September. Internet advertising remained the fastest-growing segment as it increased 30 percent, the data show. Russian Internet advertising grew more than fivefold to 56 billion rubles in the five years to 2012, according to AKAR. A new version of Yandex-market expected later this year will help the company increase its share in e-commerce market and boost revenue, Lepetukhina said. Yandex considers entering the video content segment, which would allow it to make money with video advertising. Lepetukhina cut her recommendation on Mail.ru to hold from buy last month and reiterated a buy on Yandex in August.

Russia charges all 30 Greenpeace activists with piracy

Russian border guards then lowered themselves onto the Dutch-flagged Arctic Sunrise from a helicopter, locked up the crew and towed the ship to Murmansk located nearly 2,000 kilometres north of Moscow. Among those charged on Thursday was Russian freelance photojournalist Denis Sinyakov, a former AFP and Reuters staff photographer. The Kremlin’s council on human rights, an advisory body, said it was “extremely concerned” that the journalist covering the protest for a Russian online portal had been accused of piracy. “We unambiguously consider the arrest and the laying of the piracy charges against Denis Sinyakov as pressure on the media,” it said. Leading Russian media last week blacked out photographs on their websites in protest at his detention. Investigators on Wednesday charged a British freelance videographer. Those charged Thursday included the ship’s captain, American Peter Willcox. He was the captain of Greenpeace’s Rainbow Warrior ship, bombed by French agents in New Zealand in 1985. The activists are being held in pre-trial detention centres in Murmansk and the nearby town of Apatity above the Arctic Circle. Lawyers for the 30 have filed appeals against the decision to hold them in detention. President Vladimir Putin has said that in his opinion the activists were not pirates but had breached international law by getting dangerously close to the oil rig. ‘This is not justice, it’s a reprisal’ Campaign groups including Human Rights Watch have called for their release. The unusually tough charges for a protest has sparked comparisons with the case of the Pussy Riot punks who were last year sentenced to two years in a penal colony for demonstrating against Putin in a Moscow church.

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