2 Apr 2010 14:26

Evraz moving Vysokogorsky GOK to main holding structure

MOSCOW. April 2 (Interfax) - The Russian steel major Evraz Group is transferring iron ore mining unit Vysokogorsky GOK (VGOK) into the possession of Mastercroft Ltd., a Cypriot investment company, at which the group's key metallurgical and mining assets have been assembled.

An application filed with the Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) February 19 for permission for Mastercroft to acquire 94.85% of VGOK voting shares has been approved, the FAS said.

"Evraz's goal is streamlining corporate structure," Evraz Group Vice President for Public Relations Alexei Agureyev told Interfax. "Mastercroft already holds roughly 5% of VGOK, and with this will be the main holder of virtually all Evraz's Russian enterprises, both metallurgical and mining."

As of November 23, Mastercroft was the owner of 5.15% of its shares, with the other 94.85% being held by LLC Sibmetinvest, the VGOK report for Q4 says.

According to the SPARK report for the Evraz group companies and systems, Mastercroft owns almost 100% of OJSC Evrazrud, the Nizhny Tagil, Novokuznetsk and West Siberia iron and steel plants, as well as 10.98% in OJSC OUK Yuzhkuzbassugol (50% of which is held by both the Niznhy Tagil and West Siberia works), and is the owner of 100% of Nakhokda Sea Trading Port .

VGOK, which has several underground mines with ore-processing capacity, is located near to Nizhny Tagil, roughly 10km from OJSC Niznhy Tagil Iron & Steel Works (NTMK) and 180 to the north of Yekaterinburg.

It operates the Vysokogorsk, Lebyazhinsk, Estyuninsk, and Mednorudyansk iron ore deposits. VGOK produces limestone in addition to iron ore. The agglomerate goes to Evraz metal works, primarily NTMK.

Evraz Group is one of Russia's biggest mining and steel companies. Evraz has assets in Russia, the United States, Italy, Czech Republic, Canada, Ukraine and South Africa.

A company called Lanebrook owns about 72% of Evraz. Lanebrook's beneficiaries are Millhouse, the holding company for the assets of billionaire Roman Abramovich and his business partners (50%) on the one hand, and Alexander Abramov and Alexander Frolov (50%) on the other.