29 Jan 2010 13:00

Sibir to get 3.5 bln rubles more from Alfa Bank secured with controlling stake

MOSCOW. Jan 29 (Interfax) - Alfa Bank has provided a five-year credit line totaling 8.9 billion rubles to Sibir Aviation Company, the operator of S7 Airlines, the bank said in a statement.

Sibir has already received 5.4 billion rubles on the credit line, which is secured with a controlling stake in the company and guarantees provided by the S7 Group of Companies and its owners.

The remaining 3.5 billion rubles will be disbursed after the deal is approved by shareholders at an extraordinary meeting scheduled for March 2010. The register of shareholders for the meeting closes on February 1.

The 50% stake that had belonged to board chairman Natalya Fileva, and which was being held as security for a loan from Sberbank Russia until early January, has been transferred to the balance sheet of the S7 Group of Companies, which now has a total of 64.4% of shares.

Provision of the 3.5 billion rubles is backed by state guarantees approved by the inter-agency commission chaired by Deputy Economic Development Minister Oleg Savelyev.

Sibir had planned to set up a management company to manage its aviation assets with the Rostekhnologii state corporation.

Alfa Bank and Sibir concluded an agreement that provides for transferring the accounts of companies in the S7 group for servicing by Alfa Bank in proportion to the bank's share in Sibir's debt.

In addition, two Alfa Bank representatives have been nominated to the Sibir board: the bank's head of major corporate business development, Alexei Zotov, and the head of operations with enterprises in oil and gas and telecommunications, Igor Andreyev.

Alfa Bank is one of Sibir's biggest creditors. The others are VTB , UniCredit, Promsvyazbank , Nomos Bank , and Uralsib .

S7 Group is headed by the former general director of Sibir, Vladislav Filev. Aside from Sibir Aviation Company, the group includes eight limited liability companies: Globus, S7 Tour, S7 Engineering, S7 Service, S7 Charter, S7 Invest, S7 IT, and S7 Cargo.