Russian bank may delist from London

VTB, Russia’s No.2 bank, may delist from the London Stock Exchange (LSE) in favour of Chinese bourses as sanctions imposed in the Ukraine crisis hit its ability to raise capital in Western markets, its chief executive said.

VTB shares have traded in London and Moscow since 2007, when the bank raised about $8bn (£5.03bn) in an initial pubic offering. In total, it has raised over $14bn in public share issues and has received state support to boost its capital.

The Western sanctions imposed on VTB over Russia’s role in the conflict in Ukraine limit its ability to raise funds – including capital – in the United States and Europe.

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“We are not satisfied with the LSE’s position,” Andrei Kostin, president and chairman of the management board of VTB, and an ally of President Vladimir Putin, said.

“We will seriously consider our participation in the London Stock Exchange. We are looking at Chinese bourses.”

He added any Chinese listing was unlikely this year. He gave no timeframe and did not say how much VTB might raise.

VTB received 214 billion roubles ($4.8bn) in capital in September when the Finance Ministry bought preferred shares as part of wider support for the banking sector.

VTB’s Tier 1 capital ratio – a measure of its ability to absorb losses – fell below 10 per cent in the first six months of the year.