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Rusal, one of the world’s leading aluminium companies, has announced a change in its ownership structure. Shareholder Basic Element will acquire a further 25% stake in the company from the core shareholders in Sibneft, increasing Basic Element’s shareholding to 75%. The core shareholders in Sibneft will retain a 25% interest. The financial details of the transaction are confidential.

The change in shareholder structure will not affect Rusal’s strategy, management or investment programme.

The management team is still focused on building the company to double its production capacity within a decade, through a combination of increased productivity at existing facilities, new facilities and acquisitions.

The Sibneft-related shareholders will relinquish all representation on the Rusal board, to be replaced by Basic Element representatives. Basic Element, which is wholly owned by current Rusal CEO Oleg Deripaska, manages private equity investment funds specialising in strategic investment in promising sectors of the Russian economy. It has extensive investments in the steel, automotive, energy and timber industries, as well as finance and insurance.

It is intended that Deripaska will become chairman. Alexander Boulygine, current COO, will be named CEO. The company reaffirmed a previously expressed intention of considering a Eurobond issue within a one- to three-year timeframe and a possible public flotation at a later stage.

Deripaska says the changes are unlikely to lead to any significant changes to Rusal’s management approach in the foreseeable future. “While both the original partners in Rusal contributed management personnel three years ago when we formed, all have become purely Rusal people, to be joined by many others we have recruited from Russia and abroad,” he says.