Russian businessman Oleg Deripaska has raised his stake in Hochtief Germany's largest construction company, to just under 10% from the previous 3%, Deripaska's investment unit said on Monday.
Deripaska's investment vehicle BasEl said in a statement on Monday it was looking to Hochtief's experience in airport reconstruction as BasEl is preparing to embark on large investment programmes in Russia's south. The statement said the stake had been bought in the market and BasEl now controls around 7 million shares in Hochtief. Russian Vedomosti business daily valued the deal at €390 million ($526.5 million) and quoted BasEl's construction sector chief Douglas Land as saying Deripaska had no plans for now to raise his holding in Hochtief further.
In April Deripaska, who made his fortune in the privatisation of Russia's aluminium industry, bought 30% in Austrian builder Strabag, Europe's fifth biggest builder, for €1.2 billion ($1.62 billion). He is also holding talks to buy half of Russia's largest builder Transstroi, Vedomosti said. Auditor Ernst & Young estimates that Russia will invest some $264 billion in its transport infrastructure modernisation between 2006 and 2010. BasEl said that Strabag has good experience in road and tunnel construction while Hochtief has strong positions in airport's reconstruction and development.
BasEl controls the world's largest aluminium producer United Company RUSAL, carmaker GAZ and building and real estate development firms among other investments. Deripaska, Russia's second richest man with personal wealth of $16.8 billion, according to the US Forbes magazine. (reuters.com)