ROSNEFT, Russia's state-owned oil giant, is believed to be heading for a successful stock- market flotation this week despite reports that it faces £700 million of legal claims from French rival Total.
The company is set to join the stock markets of both London and Moscow this Friday, and may raise up to $11.7 billion (£6.3bn). Reports at the weekend said the IPO was 1.5 times over-subscribed, despite being dogged by controversy.
Total is said to have filed claims against Rosneft following a dispute over a the Vankor fields in Siberia - an estimated 15 per cent of the Russian giant's estimated commercial reserves. The row is one of a string of legal claims against the company, including a $14bn claim from Russian rival Yukos.
The risk that goes with backing the float has led some western fund managers - including Edinburgh-based F&C Asset Management - to warn investors off it. The upshot is that Rosneft is likely to achieve a value of around $65bn, well below the $80bn at first suggested
UK oil major BP is set to invest around $2bn in Rosneft, and alongside Chinese firm CNPC and Malaysian group Petronas should account for about half the fund raising.