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Report: Vladimir Potanin's acquisition of 2% stake in Norilsk Nickel reversed

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Report: Vladimir Potanin's acquisition of 2% stake in Norilsk Nickel reversed

Russian billionaire Vladimir Potanin returned a 2% interest in PJSC Norilsk Nickel Co. to fellow billionaire Roman Abramovich, Reuters reported Sept. 10, citing sources.

In March, Potanin bought the 2% stake for about US$800 million from Abramovich, but the transaction was challenged at a London court by United Co. Rusal PLC, which owns a 28% stake in Norilsk. Rusal sought to block Abramovich from selling a 3.99% interest to Potanin for US$1.48 billion, saying it violates an earlier shareholder agreement.

The court ruled in Rusal's favor. However, the judge who gave the ruling has yet to detail the reasons.

A source at Interros Group, the holding which manages Potanin's assets, said the transaction was "reversed," but did not disclose the deal terms.

"The decision about a possible appeal will be taken after [we] receive the statement of reasons from the London court," the source noted.

Millhouse, which manages Abramovich's assets, and Interros declined to comment, the news wire added.