Shares drop following MegaFon $1.7 billion IPO in London and Moscow

28 November 2012 | Kavit Majithia


Russian operator MegaFon raised $1.7 billion from its public offering in London and Moscow, in what was seen as a disappointing debut in its first listing.

Shares this morning fell by 1.5% to $19.70 after trading in London, in what has been a difficult period for the Russian company.

Shares in the company were trading at an average of $20, giving MegaFon a market capitalisation of $11.1 billion. The stock will be traded as shares and global depositary receipts in Moscow and London respectively.

Goldman Sachs withdrew as the lead bank for the IPO, because of concerns over internal restructuring and a corporate governance issue. The UK listing authority also delayed the listing, and the process took an additional three weeks.

MegaFon, which was seeking to divest a 20% stake, actually only sold 15%. The listing was pushed by Swedish operator TeliaSonera, after an agreement struck this year promised a MegaFon IPO as part of a new shareholder agreement.

TeliaSonera had been aiming to reduce its stake in MegaFon from 35% to 26%, and this has gone down to 29% as a result of recent developments. It is thought TeliaSonera will utilise this capital to reduce its own growing debt margins.

Russian entrepreneur Alisher Usmanov retains a controlling stake in the company.