Leading Russian IT Company Launches Moscow Exchange IPO

Russian company IBS IT Services said on Wednesday it plans an initial public offering (IPO) on the Moscow Exchange, as it aims to tap Russia’s economic recovery and reviving domestic demand for information technology services, Reuters reported.

The shares, both new and existing, will be offered by the company as well as by shareholder IBS Holding, owned by Anatoly Karachinskiy and Sergey Matsotskiy.

Sources told Reuters last month that the company was aiming to raise around $100 million via an IPO. IBS did not describe the targeted size of the offering in a Wednesday statement announcing its intention to float.

The announcement comes a day after Russian poultry producer Cherkizovo said it planned to sell new and existing shares on the Moscow Exchange.

A number of other Russian businesses are expected to follow suit, brushing off the risk of potential fallout from a recent diplomatic spat between Moscow and the West over the poisoning of former spy Sergei Skripal, as well as the prospect of further sanctions.

The company’s chief executive said in January it was considering various fundraising options after Reuters reported in December IBS was looking to sell shares in an IPO in 2018.

The company’s CEO, Svetlana Balanova, said in a recent interview that Western sanctions against Russia are bolstering the country’s IT sector.

“Russian customers have stepped up purchases of Russian-made software due to the weaker rouble and the risk that contracts with foreign suppliers could be affected by Western sanctions,” she said, adding that demand for home-produced software is also rising as economic recovery leads Russian companies to once again invest in technology.