St Petersburg-based bank Rossiya, which is controlled by businessman Yury Kovalchuk, is expected to buy an unspecified stake in regional operator Tele2 Russia from state-controlled VTB Group, a source close to the operator told Prime business news agency. The unnamed source explained: ‘Bank Rossiya will act as the main buyer. Maybe someone else [will buy a stake in the company], but bank Rossiya will eventually control Tele2 Russia’. Further, the source noted that the stake sale will be a prelude to a long-rumoured joint venture with national operator Rostelecom.
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, VTB acquired Tele2 Russia from Sweden’s Tele2 Group in April 2013 for USD3.55 billion, including debt.