Russia’s Nornickel board rejects Rusal proposal to exchange chairman
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Russia’s Nornickel board rejects Rusal proposal to exchange chairman

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MOSCOW — The board of Russia’s Nornickel on Monday rejected a proposal by its second-largest shareholder Rusal to exchange the chairman, Nornickel mentioned, the newest step in a feud surrounding two of Russia’s largest metals corporations.

Rusal, based by Oleg Deripaska, has been making an attempt in useless to exchange the chair of Nornickel’s board of administrators since a shareholder settlement expired on the finish of 2022. The board is just not managed by Nornickel’s CEO and largest shareholder, Vladimir Potanin, however final yr appointed Potanin loyalist Andrei Bugrov as chairman.

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Rusal had proposed changing Bugrov, a former prime supervisor at Nornickel and Potanin’s Interros holding firm, with unbiased director Evgeny Shvarts, a supply near the board instructed Reuters.

However the supply mentioned eight out of 13 board members had as an alternative confirmed the prevailing chairman’s mandate. Nornickel later confirmed the board’s resolution.

“The board of administrators at immediately’s assembly confirmed the mandate of the board chairman and committee heads,” Nornickel mentioned.

Late final month, the board mentioned it supported a proposal from Interros to reinforce the function of unbiased administrators.

A Rusal spokesperson mentioned: “Sadly, the course in the direction of growing the function of unbiased administrators outlined by one of many shareholders has not been continued in substance and in reality stays solely a declaration.”

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Bugrov’s appointment final summer season adopted the departure of Gareth Penny, a Briton who stepped down quickly after Russia despatched troops to Ukraine final February, having served as an unbiased head of the corporate’s board for 9 years.

The row between Nornickel’s important shareholders dates again to 2008, when Rusal purchased its stake in Nornickel and Potanin opposed makes an attempt by Deripaska to merge the 2 corporations.

Deripaska gave up management of Rusal in 2018, however the dispute escalated final yr as a decade-old shareholder settlement between Potanin and Rusal defending Nornickel’s dividend payouts neared expiry on the finish of 2022.

Rusal filed a lawsuit in London in October alleging that Potanin was in breach of the deal.

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Potanin, whose Interros owns 37% of Nornickel, mentioned the pact wouldn’t be prolonged.

Rusal, which holds 26.4% of Nornickel, has repeatedly accused administration of inefficiency and mentioned when submitting the lawsuit that it needed an “unbiased supervisor” on the helm.

Some analysts have mentioned the lawsuit could also be an try by Rusal to bolster its negotiating place in discussions about future Nornickel dividends.

Rusal, one of many world’s largest aluminum producers, makes use of dividends from Nornickel to assist service its debt.

(Reporting by Anastasia Lyrchikova; Writing by Alexander Marrow; Enhancing by Mark Trevelyan and Kevin Liffey)


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