Yukos fails to stop Rosneft IPO but will appeal

Lawyers for Yukos have failed in their High Court bid to block the listing of Rosneft shares on the London Stock Exchange, and have immediately applied to the Court of Appeal.

Matrix Chambers’ Clare Montgomery QC, instructed by Byrne & Partners litigation partner Nicola Boulton for Yukos, had had sought permission for a judicial review of the Rosneft IPO, which is to raise $10.4bn.

Yukos alleges Rosneft illegally obtained its chief oil-producing asset, Yuganskneftegaz, which was auctioned off by the Russian Federation after Yukos was handed massive tax bills.

Mr Justice Charles, after a two-day hearing in the High Court, rejected Yukos’ bid for a judicial review of the Financial Services Authority and London Stock Exchange’s decision to list Rosneft shares.

Rosneft shares priced on Friday (14 July) at $7.55, raising the company some $10.4bn to become the world’s fifth largest IPO to date and value the company at $80bn.

Rosneft shares are now free to be admitted to the LSE Wednesday morning (19 July) for trade.

Rosneft was advised by Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton on its IPO, but had instructed Travers Smith in defence of Yukos’ injunction application. Mark Howard QC of Brick Court Chambers represented Rosneft in court.

Ashurst litigation partner Edward Sparrrow and Fountain Court Chambers’ Michael Brindle QC represented the FSA.

The LSE has instructed Freshfields, and Brick Court Chambers’ Richard Gordon QC for its defence.

ABN Amro Rothschild, Dresdner Kleinwort, JP Morgan and Morgan Stanley acted as joint global coordinators for the IPO, advised by Linklaters.