The former wife of Russian businessman Oleg Deripaska, Polina Yumasheva, said that together with her father, ex-head of the presidential administration Valentin Yumashev, did not agree to sell their stake in En +. “We did not negotiate the sale of our package,” she said to RBC.
“I haven’t negotiated with anyone yet,” Yumasheva said, commenting on Bloomberg’s information. She did not specify whether she and her father had an intention to find potential buyers.
Valentin and Polina Yumashevs really intend to sell their stake in En +, but do not conduct any negotiations and discussions, a source familiar with the company's shareholders told RBC. Based on the market value of En + shares on the London Stock Exchange, the approximate value of securities owned by Valentin and Polina Yumashev is $ 357.75 million.
Earlier, the Bloomberg agency, citing interlocutors familiar with the situation, reported that former family members of Oleg Deripaska are looking for buyers for their shares in En + Group. According to agency sources, the discussion is preliminary, no specific agreements have been reached. As noted by Bloomberg's interlocutors, so far none of the potential buyers have been interested in the offer and there is an option in which the transaction will not be possible to carry out.
Polina and Valentin Yumashev own a 6.75% stake in En +, which are voted by independent proxies. After the divorce, the businessman’s two minor children received 1.64% of the shares transferred to the Liberi Foundation trust. According to Bloomberg, in all, children have 3.42% of the shares, which are also trusted by proxies.
The representative of Oleg Deripaska did not respond to a request from RBC, Valentin Yumashev declined to comment.
The alignment after the sanctions
In April 2018, En + Group was included in the list of sanctions of the US Treasury. Along with it, other companies controlled by Deripaska, such as UC Rusal (now En + owns 50.1% of UC Rusal), Basic Element, Russian Machines, Eurosibenergo and the GAZ Group, were also sanctioned.
In January 2019, Washington lifted restrictions on UC Rusal, En + and Eurosibenergo, while retaining sanctions against the businessman himself. This was the result of Deripaska’s agreements with US authorities. The condition for the withdrawal of companies from sanctions was the restriction of the entrepreneur’s control over them - for example, his share in En + decreased from 70 to 44.95%.
In early October, the head of En +, Vladimir Kiryukhin, announced that Deripaska had no influence on the leadership of the group. “After the imposition of sanctions, the role of Deripaska was limited to the capabilities of an ordinary shareholder, and after the lifting of the sanctions, I can say this under oath, I did not feel any influence on the management on his part and did not receive orders from him,” he said.
After a decrease in Deripaska's stake in En +, VTB Bank became the second largest shareholder of the company (21.68%). In early September, the Financial Times, citing sources, reported that VTB was in talks about a possible sale of its stake with Chinese companies. According to the newspaper, two state-owned industrial groups turned to VTB. One source said that Chinese companies do not discuss the exact details, but there is "serious interest on both sides." Then the VTB press service refused to comment on this.
A share of Valentin and Polina Yumashev in En + can also be bought by someone from foreign investors, for example, from China or Saudi Arabia, with whom Russia has recently improved relations, RBC senior director Maxim Khudalov said. “The company is effective both in an economic sense and in terms of carbon dioxide emissions per tonne of metal, it is one of the most efficient manufacturers in the world,” he said.
In October 2017, in preparation for En + for an initial public offering (IPO) on the London Stock Exchange, Polina Yumasheva received a 5.8% stake in En +, another 1.75% went to her father Valentin (in the amount of 7.55%), according to the company's report, filed at the end of February 2018 with the Jersey Financial Services Commission. After transactions with other shareholders, their share decreased to 6.75%.
Oleg Deripaska could simply give his wife shares of the holding on the eve of the IPO, noted Nikita Kulikov, Executive Director of HEADS Consulting. If we talk about potential property disputes between spouses, they are sometimes settled with the help of such voluntary alienation of part of the joint property, said Denis Frolov, partner of BMS Law Firm.
Deripaska divorced his wife at the beginning of 2018, it was then that she was no longer indicated as the wife of the main owner of En +, which controls UC Rusal, in the documents of the aluminum company, which were disclosed on the Hong Kong stock exchange, where UC Rusal has been trading since 2009.