(Bloomberg)--United Co. Rusal, the world’s biggest aluminum producer, will today study a $12 billion offer to buy its 25 percent stake in OAO GMK Norilsk Nickel following a dispute over control of the nickel company.
Norilsk offered on Dec. 16 to buy back its own shares from Rusal. A board committee meeting is scheduled for today, Rusal said by e-mail, confirming an earlier Interfax report.
“We consider our investment in Norilsk Nickel as strategic, however, as a public company we discuss all incoming offers in accordance with existing corporate governance procedures of the company,” Rusal said in the e-mail.
Rusal hired Merrill Lynch to conduct an appraisal of the stake’s value, Interfax also reported today, citing people it didn’t indentify. Rusal declined to comment on the matter.
Rusal may sell the shares at between $12 billion and $15 billion, Mikhail Prokhorov, who holds 17 percent of the aluminum producer, told Vedomosti on Dec. 20.
Norilsk said last week it held consultations with banks including JPMorgan Chase & Co., Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. before making an offer to Rusal. The stake in Norilsk is today worth about $10.6 billion based on Micex prices.
Rusal rose 3.4 percent to 22.75 euros by 3:09 p.m. in Paris and Norilsk gained 1.2 percent to 6,780 rubles in Moscow.