City & Corporate: Merlin secures Evraz share-listing deal

Top Russian steel maker Evraz Holding has drafted in Merlin to handle financial comms around its £263m listing on the London Stock Exchange.

Merlin chief executive Paul Downes is leading the team advising Evraz, which announced its IPO and listing of general depository receipts last Friday.

Morgan Stanley is global co-ordinator for the deal, while Credit Suisse First Boston, Morgan Stanley and Renaissance Capital are the joint lead managers and joint bookrunners.

Evraz hopes to float about ten per cent of its equity in order to raise money to modernise its plants. It also wants to fund acquisitions like that of Vitkovice Steel, the Czech steel maker set for privatisation this year.

The IPO will be the largest international listing by a Russian steel company.

Evraz is hoping to capitalise on the London market's interest in metals and mining companies and the recent success of Russian listings, such as those of conglomerate Sistema and grocer Pyaterochka.

Evraz, whose plants and mines are based in the Urals and Siberia, made 13.7 million tonnes of crude steel and mined 7.8 million tonnes of iron ore last year.

Its subsidiary, Evraz Ruda, which Evraz bought in March this year, produced another 5.4 million tonnes of iron ore for Evraz steel production.

The company has positioned itself as a low-cost steel producer and supplier to the construction and railway sectors. Evraz sold 13.1 million tonnes of rolled steel products last year.

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