Rusnano plans 10% placement, IPO looming

Rusnano Board Chairman Anatoly Chubais (RIA Novosti/Vladimir Astapkovich)
The Russian state-owned nanotechnology company Rusnano plans a private placement of 10% of its shares by the end of the year, an IPO is yet to come, CEO Anatoly Chubais told RT.

­“What we are doing now is we are coming to the next stage of the development of the company. We have started as a state company but we want to raise private capital and we decided to make a private placement of 10% of Rusnano shares,” Chubais said.

Rusnano is in the final stage of negotiations with both Russian and foreign private investors and institutions interested in Rusnano, he explained. “I hope that by the end of this year or the beginning of next year we’ll announce the list of investors,” Chubais said.

The privatization of 10% of Rusnano will be just the beginning of a plan to float 40% of the company.

The nanotechnology company is also interested in developing cooperation with Silicon Valley in the United States. “I’m very satisfied with existing cooperation with Silicon Valley, the partners we have there are quit serious,” Chubais told. “We invested about $1.5bln in the US, particularly in Silicon Valley”. But Rusnano still wants to attract new investors from the US and other countries “expand the geography where we are represented”.

Chubais pointed out that the placement of Rusano’s shares is private as the company isn’t prepared for the IPO yet. However, the public placement may happen in 2015 or 2016. “We are discussing it,” Chubais said. “But at first we have to make the private placement successful and then we will decide about the next stages”.

The cost of the Rusnano 10% stake isn’t estimated yet as the financial situation in the company remains unclear. In 2011, Rusnano had a $2.9 billion net loss under Russian Accounting Standards. In March 2012, Rusnano announced it was closing 13 investment projects at a cost of $600 million. The official reason for the decision was the rejection of co-investors. Earlier, in September 2011, Rusnano gave up another 6 investment projects with $300 million.

Last year Rusnano expected its project companies would generate more than $10 billion by 2015. Russian analysts predicted that 10% of Rusnano would cost at least $1 billion by 2013. But with the investment portfolio reduced, the cost of the 10% is likely to be recalculated.
Rusnano was created as a Russian state corporation in 2007 to realize Government nanotechnology projects. In 2009 Rusnano established an international award in the “nano” field – RUSNANOPRIZE with a fund of $90,000. The Prize is awarded annually in several fields: Optics and Electronics; Nanomaterials and Surface Modification; Medicine, Pharmacology and Biotechnologies; Energy Efficiency and Green Technologies.