UPDATE 1-Russia's PIK London shares suspended amid dispute

Fri Feb 11, 2011 4:23am EST

* Developer PIK GDRs suspended by London regulator

* 8.6 pct shares frozen by Moscow court

* Lender Nomos Bank had shares as collateral

* PIK shares down in Moscow after a 3-day rise

MOSCOW, Feb 11 (Reuters) - Shares in Russian real estate developer PIK (PIKK.MM) were suspended in London after the company said on Friday that Moscow's arbitration court froze 8.6 percent of its stock.

PIK said the court had frozen 42,402,773 of its shares -- approximately 8.6 percent of PIK's share capital -- "granted to ... Nomos Bank in connection with a legal dispute between Nomos Bank and Maritrade Investments Limited.".

Maritrade is the business vehicle owned by PIK shareholder Yuri Zhukov, who has been fighting Nomos in a legal battle for nearly a year.

PIK's statement came on the back of a three-day share price rally fuelled by speculation the dispute between Nomos and Zhukov was close to conclusion. [ID:nLDE719273]

Analysts say the saga is holding back PIK's plans to raise additional funding.

Two of PIK's shareholders, Zhukov and Kirill Pisarev, had put up PIK shares as collateral against a $272 million loan awarded to PIK by Nomos, a mid-size Russian bank, as part of a debt restructuring in the wake of the financial crisis.

Zhukov and Pisarev agreed the loan, each pledging 12.5 percent their own shares. Pisarev now has about 10.5 percent of his company Forienst Investment in the collateral, while Zhukov withdrew his share, which Nomos wants back.

"Winning the case would enable Nomos to take the collateral and sell the shares to the market in an auction," said one of the lawyers involved in the case.

"PIK is neither a plaintiff nor a defendant in the dispute between Nomos Bank and Maritrade ... but has appeared in these legal proceedings as a third-party only. PIK continues to assess the potential effect of these proceedings on PIK's shares."

PIK, 38 percent owned by Russian billionaire Suleiman Kerimov, builds low-cost homes in Moscow and its suburbs. (Reporting by Nastassia Astrasheuskaya and Olga Sichkar, Editing by John Bowker)

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