Moscow - Roman Abramovich and a business partner will buy a 24.84 percent stake in Russia’s largest freight container operator TransContainer from VTB bank, two industry sources told Reuters on Thursday.
Abramovich, best known in Britain as the owner of the English Premier League soccer club Chelsea, and his business partner Alexander Abramov together already own 24.5 percent in TransContainer via their Enisei Capital vehicle.
Russian shipping group Fesco sold 25.1 percent in TransContainer to VTB and an unidentified investor in October. VTB took on a 24.84 percent stake, and had plans to re-sell it. Based on Transcontainer’s market capitalisation in Moscow on Thursday, the stake is worth around 15.4 billion roubles ($232 million).On Thursday, VTB said it had secured a forward contract to sell the stake, without naming the buyer.
State-controlled Russian Railways has 50 percent plus two shares in TransContainer. A source close to Russian Railways and an industry source said the companies of Abramovich and Abramov would buy the stake from VTB. Spokesmen for TransContainer and Abramovich declined to comment. VTB’s press service declined to disclose the buyer.