Kinnevik Rises on Tele2 Affiliate’s Russian Unit Disposal

Investment AB Kinnevik, the publicly traded investment vehicle of Sweden’s Stenbeck family, rose to the highest in almost two years after its Tele2 AB affiliate agreed to sell Russian operations to VTB Group.

Kinnevik jumped as much as 5.6 percent to 157.7 kronor, the highest intraday price since May 2011, and was trading up 5.4 percent at 11:31 a.m. in Stockholm. The shares have gained 16 percent this year. Kinnevik owns 30.5 percent of the capital and 47.7 percent of the votes in Tele2, a Swedish wireless provider.

VTB, Russia’s second-biggest bank, agreed yesterday to acquire Tele2’s business in the country for $2.4 billion in cash, and to take on $1.15 billion in net debt. Tele2 is pulling out of Russia after 12 years following the Stockholm-based mobile operator’s failure last July to win a wireless license.

Kinnevik will use the 3.8 billion kronor ($582 million) it receives from Tele2’s Russian disposal to reduce debt, while it will keep a goal of spending as much as 3 billion kronor on investments this year, the Stockholm-based investment company said in a statement yesterday.

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