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Rostelecom to get 8.3 bln rubles loan from VTB for buyback

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Jan 23 (Reuters) - Russia's Rostelecom said on Monday its wholly-owned subsidiary Mobitel has secured an 8.3 billion rouble ($265 million) one-year loan from bank VTB to finance repurchase of Rostelecom shares.

The state-controlled telecoms operator earlier approved an up to $500 million share buyback.

Mobitel currently holds 3.44% of the charter capital (2.69% of common shares) of its parent company; the shares in question were acquired from a number of dissenting shareholders who failed to support the reorganisation of Rostelecom last year.

According to Kommersant, Rostelecom’s Mobitel unit is poised to buy more than half of Russian billionaire Suleiman Kerimov’s 5.8% stake in Rostelecom.

Kerimov bought the stake for 13.7 billion rubles ($435.3 million) and is expected to sell it to Mobitel, Rostelecom's subsidiary, for 167 rubles per share, or a total of 15.2 billion rubles.

($1 = 31.3420 Russian roubles)

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