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Wolfensohn Gets Post with VTB

VTB announced Friday that it had appointed former World Bank President James Wolfensohn as a consultant to its board of directors.

The addition of Wolfensohn to the bank's supervisory board is expected to help its IPO push and make it more attractive for investors.

"As an experienced manager and a reputable banker, Wolfensohn will bring a wealth of experience to our bank," VTB vice president Vitaly Titov said Friday in a telephone interview. "We count on his good advice during our IPO placement."

State-owned VTB launched its initial public offering in Moscow earlier this month. The bank said Wednesday that it would try to raise up to $8.4 billion in a second offering in London next month, issuing some 1.7 trillion shares at a price that some market players view as grossly inflated.

The bank plans to issue 1.73 trillion new shares, equal to 25 percent of its charter capital. Then it plans to float 22.5 percent of its shares in Moscow and London.

James Wolfensohn is also an adviser to Citigroup's senior management on global strategy and on international matters.

VTB expects first-quarter profit to decline, Interfax reported Friday. VTB sold its stake in truck producer KamAZ for $89 million in the first quarter of 2006, contributing to that quarter's profit of $334 million, the agency reported.

(The Moscow Times 30.iv.07)

 
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