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REFILE-UPDATE 1-Metro may get started again on Russian IPO in September - sources
June 26, 2014 / 2:35 PM / in 3 years

REFILE-UPDATE 1-Metro may get started again on Russian IPO in September - sources

(Adds details, background; refiled to remove extraneous text in first paragraph)

* IPO restart depends on Ukraine, rouble - sources

* Metro hopes to raise 1 bln euros to cut debt, invest

* CEO has said IPO should proceed if market calm returns

DUESSELDORF, June 26 (Reuters) - German retailer Metro could resume seeking a share listing for its Russian cash-and-carry wholesale operation in September, having delayed the process in March due to the Ukraine crisis, sources close to the matter said.

Company and financial sources said relaunching the initial public share offer - which had been expected to fetch at least 1 billion euros ($1.36 billion) - would depend on developments in Ukraine and the level of the Russian rouble.

Metro wants to use the proceeds to invest in the fast-growing Russian business and other emerging markets and pay down debt.

Metro declined to comment but Chief Executive Olaf Koch has said in the past the proposed offer had been well received by investors and should still proceed if the turmoil on Russian markets abated.

“Chances aren’t bad that IPO preparations will be resumed at the end of September,” one of the sources with knowledge of the matter said.

If Metro wanted to use its fiscal third-quarter results as the basis for an IPO prospectus it would have to send out an intention to float at the latest by mid-October with a listing then possible by mid-November.

However, companies usually file documentation sooner, rather than get too close to the official deadlines.

Another source said Metro has its plan ready. “But until now, the Russian market remains closed. It has improved but is still not good enough to do a deal,” the source said.

Metro is Russia’s fourth-biggest retailer behind X5 , Magnit and French chain Auchan. Its Russian unit made a quarter of Metro’s group operating profit in 2013 with sales of about $5 billion, some 9 percent of Metro’s total.

Shares in Metro fell sharply earlier this year, from 35.20 euros at the start of the year to 27.15 by mid-March due to the Ukraine crisis and delayed IPO but have recovered in recent weeks along with a bounce in Russian stocks. On Thursday the share price was trading down 0.3 percent on the day at 31.575 euros.

Metro operates a sprawling empire of 2,200 outlets in 32 countries including cash-and-carry stores and Europe’s largest consumer electronics chain Media-Saturn which it sees as its most promising businesses for the future. It also runs Real hypermarkets and Kaufhof department stores in Germany. ($1 = 0.7335 euros) (Reporting by Matthias Inverardi, Arno Schuetze, Megan Davies and Olga Popova; Writing by Emma Thomasson; Editing by Greg Mahlich)

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