The FINANCIAL — The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has today sold 17,623,240 global depositary receipts (GDRs) in the Russian retailer Lenta as part of a coordinated transaction with the company aimed at increasing its free float and attracting new classes of investors. In parallel with the EBRD sale, Lenta itself today placed 21,126,760 GDRs on the open market.
Alain Pilloux, EBRD Managing Director for Industry, Commerce and Agribusiness, said: “The success of this offering demonstrates the continued interest in Lenta on the part of both the international and domestic investor community, based on the company’s proven ability to deliver outstanding performance even in challenging economic conditions, according to EBRD.
“The EBRD continues to be strongly committed to Lenta and is comfortable with its remaining stake in the company following today’s partial sale, which was part of a normal portfolio management operation. The Bank looks forward to its continued involvement in the company’s Board of Directors,” Mr. Pilloux added.
The EBRD has been an equity investor in Lenta since 2007. Following today’s sale, it retains a 7.4 percent stake in the company and keeps the right to propose a candidate for a seat on Lenta’s Board of Directors.
Lenta, the EBRD and the company’s biggest shareholder, TPG, are subject to a 90-day lock-up following the sale. This will bar them from undertaking any transactions involving their shares during that entire period.
In June 2015, the Bank sold 17,833,000 Lenta GDRs, representing 25 per cent of the EBRD’s holding in the company at the time.