April 2, 2014 / 9:26 AM / 4 years ago

UPDATE 2-Czech property firm plans listing via Dutch-based Domus

* Company owns 44,000 apartments in coal-mining Czech region

* Company partly owned by financier Zdenek Bakala (Adds comment from filing, BXR, details throughout about company)

By Freya Berry and Jan Lopatka

LONDON, April 2 (Reuters) - Netherlands-based property company Domus plans a stock market listing in Amsterdam that a source familiar with the matter said could value the firm at 490 million euros ($676 million).

Domus is owned by Dutch private equity firm BXR, which will remain a minority shareholder, the source said.

BXR is half-owned by Czech investor Zdenek Bakala. It controls RPG Byty, a property company in the Czech Republic, which will be folded into Domus.

RPG Byty holds around 44,000 residential properties and other assets in the Ostrava coal mining region in eastern Czech Republic. Bakala is, through BXR, also a shareholder in New World Resources which owns coals mines in the region.

The source said Domus was seeking to sell 250 million euros of new and pre-existing shares in an initial public offering (IPO) in Amsterdam and the sale would be run by U.S. investment bank JP Morgan.

Domus said on Wednesday it would seek to list in the second quarter of 2014, subject to market conditions. It gave no further details.

A prospectus for the sale should be released in several weeks, a BXR spokeswoman said. “The free float will be a majority of the shares,” she said.

RPG Byty said in a statement the sale would consist of both new and existing shares.

JP Morgan declined to comment.

RPG Byty’s residential properties have been at the centre of a row in the Czech Republic over whether the tenants should have the opportunity to buy their homes.

Czech politicians, including the ruling centre-left Social Democrats, have in the past called on RPG to sell the flats to the tenants. President Milos Zeman said in September last year after a trip to the region where the properties are located that he would prefer the company to transfer the apartments to public authorities or the tenants and proceeds should be used to subsidise loss-making mines in the region.

RPG Byty’s bond, maturing in 2020, jumped in price on Wednesday following news of the IPO plan. RPG Byty had a gross asset value of 894 million euros and core earnings or EBITDA of 57 million at the end of 2013.

A spokesman for Bakala was not immediately available for comment.

$1 = 0.7249 Euros Aditonal reporting by Robert Muller, Editing by Jane Merriman

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