Monday, 10 December 2007

Warnig steps down from Dresdner board

Financial News

Jason Corcoran in Moscow

10 December 2007

German banker Mattias Warnig has stepped down from the board of Dresdner Kleinwort in Russia to concentrate on leading the construction of Gazprom’s natural gas pipeline to Germany.

Warnig had remained on Dresdner’s board since resigning as chairman and becoming chief executive of Gazprom’s Nord Stream venture last year.

A spokeswoman for Nord Stream in Moscow said: “This is the private decision of Warnig to step down from the board of directors at Dresdner where he remains in contact. Nord Stream is the biggest infrastructure project in Europe and he is very much driving the project, due to start in 2009.”

Dresdner confirmed Warnig was no longer on its staff but said: “He maintains an ongoing relationship with the bank… in an advisory and consultancy basis.”

Warnig, who has known President Vladimir Putin since the early 1990s when he set up Dresdner’s office in St Petersburg, also sits on the board of Gazprom and was appointed a director of state-run bank VTB before its summer listing. Under Warnig, Dresdner became one of the most successful investment banks during Putin’s presidency.

It advised Gazprom on its $13bn (€8.9bn) acquisition of a majority stake in oil company Sibneft from oligarch Roman Abramovich and the Russian Government on its controversial valuation of Yuganskneftegaz, the main subsidiary of oil company Yukos.

It was also joint bookrunner and joint global co-ordinator on last year’ $10.7bn initial public offering by oil company Rosneft.

Nord Stream, a joint venture between Gazprom and Germany’s BASF and E.On, is building a 1,200km gas pipeline beneath the Baltic Sea near St Petersburg to the German town of Greifswald.

It last month selected Dresdner, Société Générale and ABN Amro as consultants on raising €5bn ($7.3bn) and said it would seek financing on capital markets at the end of the first quarter.

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