Mail.ru Group Ltd., a Russian investor in Facebook Inc., has drawn orders for all the stock on sale in its $876 million initial public offering in London, two people with knowledge of the talks said.
The banks arranging the sale expect to set the final price for the stock in the week of Nov. 8, said one of the people, who declined to be named because the talks are private. Mail.ru, partly owned by billionaire Alisher Usmanov and South Africa’s Naspers Ltd., is selling 31.6 million global depository receipts for $23.70 to $27.70 each. The company’s owners may reap as much as $792 million from selling their stake in the IPO, and Mail.ru may raise up to $83.1 million, the terms show.
Mail.ru’s IPO, if successful, will be the biggest in U.K. since Nathaniel Rothschild’s mining fund, Vallar Plc, raised $1 billion in July. The sale would also be the largest overseas share offering by a Russian company since Moscow-based United Co. Rusal raised $2.24 billion in Hong Kong in January.
Russian companies are planning the biggest wave of IPOs since before the credit crisis as bond yields at near-record lows stoke investor appetite for higher returns from equities. O’Key Group SA, Russia’s third-biggest food retailer, is planning to raise $540 million in London this year, while Severstal’s gold unit, Nord Gold NV, may seek $1 billion, three people familiar with the talks said Oct. 19.
Founders Offering Shares
Mail.ru founders Gregory Finger, Yuri Milner and Mikhail Vinchel will sell shares in the IPO, the terms show. The company will use some of the money raised to finance the $112.5 million acquisition of an additional 7.5 percent stake in vKontakte, a Russian social network service, according to a statement yesterday. Mail.ru will own 32.49 percent of the service after the transaction.
The Moscow-based company owns 2.4 percent of Facebook, 5.1 percent of Groupon Inc. and 1.5 percent of Zynga Game Network, according to an Oct. 11 statement. The three stakes may be worth a total of $900 million, more than double their combined book value of $340 million, according to analysts at Goldman Sachs Group Inc., which owns 1 percent of the Russian company and is among the banks arranging the IPO.
Mail.ru’s revenue may jump 51 percent this year to $301 million, while earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization are likely to rise 70 percent to $104 million, the Goldman Sachs analysts said.
JPMorgan Chase & Co., Morgan Stanley and Russia’s VTB Capital are also arranging the IPO. A call to Mail.ru’s spokesman in London wasn’t immediately returned.