Cut-price start for Vladimir Putin’s pride

 

Russian president Vladimir Putin’s ambitions to create a major financial centre in his country suffered a blow today when the flotation of the Moscow Exchange ended up priced at the bottom of the suggested range.

The shares were sold at 55 roubles, the bottom of the 55-63 roubles price range, valuing the exchange at 127 billion roubles (£2.8 billion).

Putin had encouraged the flotation of Moscow Exchange on its own market in a bid to convince other Russian companies that they did not need to make their main listing in London or New York. Today’s listing is the largest ever solely on the Russian exchange.

Although Moscow Exchange said the share offer had been oversubscribed, this included a sizeable investment by the Russian state private equity fund RDIF.

Alexander Afanasiev, chief executive of Moscow Exchange, said: “The fact that the offering was oversubscribed… is genuine recognition of the recent initiatives to develop Russia’s capital market infrastructure.”

The chairman of the exchange, Russian central bank deputy chairman Sergei Shvetsov, said: “We believe that the Russian economy will continue to be one of the fastest growing major global economies and the exchange will play a critical part in this growth.”

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