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    Rosneft consolidated net profit rises 50% in 1Q06 - 2

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    MOSCOW, May 19 (RIA Novosti) - Rosneft, a Russian state-owned oil company, said Friday its consolidated net profit rose 49.8% year-on-year in the first quarter of 2006 to 40.8 billion rubles ($1.5 bln).

    (Adds production details paragraph 2)

    MOSCOW, May 19 (RIA Novosti) - Rosneft, a Russian state-owned oil company, said Friday its consolidated net profit rose 49.8% year-on-year in the first quarter of 2006 to 40.8 billion rubles ($1.5 bln).

    The company said its oil production in 1Q06 rose 7% year-on-year to 19 million tons (139.7 million bbl) and natural gas production increased 16.5% to 3.6 bln cubic meters.

    Rosneft, Russia's second largest oil producer, said last year it had planned to hold an initial public offering on Russian and foreign trading floors in the third quarter of 2006 and raise $20 billion for 30% of its shares.

    The Vedomosti daily reported yesterday, though, that the IPO would be conducted as early as July 14 with the road show starting on June 26. The company would trade only $8-bln worth or 15-16% of its stock, including $3 bln in Russia.

    Kirill Androsov, a deputy economic development and trade minister, said previously that Rosneft would issue additional shares and sell existing shares under a single initial public offering in the third or fourth quarter of 2006, but that the number of shares to be traded on the stock exchange and the conditions of the IPO still remained undecided.

    Androsov declined to say how much the company expected to raise through the IPO, but said that the money would be used to clear $7.5 billion of debts belonging to Rosneftegaz, a state-owned company that holds 100% minus one share in Rosneft. The remaining share belongs to the Federal Agency for the Management of Federal Property, which owns 100% of Rosneftegaz stock.

    Rosneft has a charter capital of 90.92 million rubles (about $3.3 million), and ordinary shares have a face value of 1 ruble each. Company experts estimate its value at $25 billion.

    The company said Monday its proven reserves as of December 31, 2005, were 18.9 billion barrels of oil equivalent, including 14.9 bln barrels of crude and 691 bln cubic meters of natural gas.

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