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MegaFon CEO: company sees no immediate need to raise more capital

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MOSCOW--Russian mobile carrier MegaFon's chief executive said Thursday that despite a more than 40% rise in the company's share price since going public last year he sees no need to raise additional capital and views the intitial public offering a success.

MegaFon's offering in November 2012 was for just 15% of its shares, lower than the 20% the company had initially hoped to sell. The listing also came in at the very bottom of its share range in a book that wasn't heavily oversubscribed. But since the listing, the stock has shot up, suggesting interest in the stock is greater than originally thought.

"We don't see the need for additional sources of income at this time, so we don't feel there is any need for an secondary offering right now," said Chief Executive Ivan Tavrin after MegaFon released it fourth-quarter results--its first since going public--reflecting a 28.3% year-on-year boost in net profit.

He also said that MegaFon wasn't involved in reported talks by the company's main shareholder, Alisher Usmanov, to buy the Russian unit of Sweden's Tele2 AB and split it among Russia's big three mobile operators.

"Any merger or acquisition we would make would only be done with increasing shareholder value in mind," Mr. Tavrin said. "So no, we are not in discussions over Tele2."

He also said that an expected rise in capital expenditure of up to 36% in 2013 was driven by the further roll-out of the company's 4G mobile network. MegaFon's Chief Financial Officer, Gevork Vermishyan, said that 2012's 37.8% decline in capex was "slightly exceptional" as several 2G and 3G expansion projects had come to a close.

Dow Jones

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