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May 30, 2013 18:03

British regulator resumes trade in Global Ports GDR (Part 2)

MOSCOW. May 30 (Interfax) - Great Britain's Financial Conduct Authority has resumed trading in Global Ports' global depositary receipts (GDR), the London Stock Exchange (LSE) reported.

The suspension was in force since 5:30 p.m. Moscow time on May 24. On that day, Russian business daily Vedomosti reported that businessmen Vitaly Yuzhilin and Andrei Kobzar are in talks with Global Ports to sell National Container Company (NCC).

The suspension was lifted at 5:30 p.m. Moscow time on Thursday.

Earlier in the day, Global Ports confirmed that it is in talks with the owners of NCC, although "there is no certainty as to the outcome of such negotiations at this stage."

Vedomosti had previously reported that Yuzhilin and Kobzar had put NCC up for sale, citing sources close to the company and Yuzhilin. The potential buyers are Global Ports, Summa Group and UCL Ports, the paper said, adding that "detailed negotiations are only being held with Global Ports."

However, there is no certainty yet as to the size of the stake that Global Ports might buy, the structure of the sale or the price, the paper cited one source as saying. But the group has already done due diligence, the source said, without disclosing the valuation of NCC. Vedomosti cited another source as saying that Yuzhilin will only sell 75% of NCC.

Yuzhilin and Kobzar are selling the business because of NCC's heavy debt burden of about $1 billion, one of the paper's sources believes. Kobzar bought 53.81% of NCC from Sergei Generalov's Industrial Investors in the middle of 2010 for $900 million. The deal was fully financed with a loan from Sberbank of Russia (RTS: SBER), a source close to NCC told the paper.

Forbes estimates that Yuzhilin has a fortune of $450 million and that Kobzar is worth $600 million. Yuzhilin is a deputy in the State Duma, first elected in 2003, and sits on the budget and taxes committee.

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