Polyus Gold (LON:PGIL), Russia’s largest gold miner, has seen a change of control after Onexim, the vehicle of Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov, sold its entire 37.8% stake.
Two other Russian billionaires, Zelimkhan Mutsoyev and Gavril Yushvaev, paid Onexim US$3.61bn for its shares after the UK Takeover Panel gave its approval.
The Panel had considered whether the two buyers were acting in concert and if purchasing Onexim’s stake should trigger a mandatory offer for the company.
Lizarazu, Mutsoyev’s vehicle, paid US$1.77bn for an 18.5% stake, while Yushvaev’s Receza bought 19.28% for US$1.85mln.
Onexim put its stake up for sale in September.
Suleiman Kerimov owns 40.2% of Polyus and the sale by Onexim is being tipped by analysts as a catalyst for a merger of the company with London-listed Polymetal (LON:POLY), a company that also has strong links to Kerimov.
Polymetal is another major Russian gold and silver producer and also has assets in Kazakhstan.
Shares in Polyus rose by 1.8% to 223p, while Polymetal gained 2.8% to 972p.