Rosneft's Sechin says TNK-BP minorities offer 'completely fair'

MOSCOW Sat Oct 5, 2013 10:24am EDT

Rosneft President and Chairman of the Management Board Igor Sechin smiles before a signing ceremony after talks with the Chinese delegation at the Kremlin in Moscow March 22, 2013. REUTERS/Sergei Karpukhin

Rosneft President and Chairman of the Management Board Igor Sechin smiles before a signing ceremony after talks with the Chinese delegation at the Kremlin in Moscow March 22, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Sergei Karpukhin

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Minority shareholders in TNK-BP Holding TNBP.MM should not complain about the price Rosneft (ROSN.MM) offered for their shares as it is at a premium to their market value, Russian media quoted Rosneft head Igor Sechin as saying on Saturday.

His comments echo remarks on Friday by Rosneft Deputy Chairman Andrey Kostin, who said the buyout was in line with the law and good corporate governance practice.

Rosneft announced the deal to buy the remaining shares for about $1.5 billion in late September. The deal works out at around $2.07 per ordinary share and $1.71 for preferred shares.

But the offer disappointed some investors hoping to get closer to the $3.70 a share analysts calculated Rosneft had paid for TNK-BP in a $55 billion takeover that created the world's largest publicly traded oil company by output.

Any disappointment was not justified, Sechin said, according to news agency Interfax, since Rosneft had taken into account share price fluctuations over an 18-month period when calculating the price.

The result was "a completely fair offer" with a premium of around 30 percent, Interfax quoted Sechin as saying.

One investor in TNK-BP, Franklin Templeton's emerging markets group, has said the fairest solution would have been for Rosneft to offer the same deal as for the original buyout.

"The Templeton fund has earned quite a bit from owning TNK-BP shares, receiving dividends alone amounting to more than 2 billion roubles ($62.2 million). They should be grateful to Russian and (President Vladimir) ... Putin for our investment climate," Sechin said.

Mark Mobius, executive chairman of the investment group, could not immediately be reached for comment.

Sechin has repeatedly said the company had no obligation to buy the remaining shares and that Rosneft is not a "charity fund".

Minority shareholders own about 5 percent of the unit, now renamed RN Holding. ($1 = 32.1765 Russian roubles)

(Reporting by Alessandra Prentice and Megan Davies; Editing by David Holmes)

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