OREANDA-NEWS. On October 10, 2008 the Board of Directors of OGK-3 adopted a strategy to expand its asset base and create a diversified holding to include assets in gas and alternative energy, including hydrogen and peat energy, reported the press-centre of Norilsk Nickel.

In pursuit of this strategy, the Board of Directors has authorized the following strategic acquisitions:

The acquisition of a 25% minus 1 share stake in OJSC Rusia Petroleum from Jarford Enterprises Inc. for US576 mln. Rusia Petroleum holds a license for exploration and development of the main area of Kovyktinskoye gas condensate deposit, one of the largest and strategically most important gas deposits in Russia.

In addition to the 25 per cent minus one share stake, OGK-3 may acquire a 0.82% plus 1 share stake in Rusia Petroleum in the future. An independent appraisal of the value of the 25.82% stake in Rusia Petroleum was provided to the Board of OGK-3.  

The acquisition of approximately a 35% stake in Plug Power, a company listed on NASDAQ, from Smart Hydrogen which is jointly owned by Norilsk Nickel and Interros Group for approximately US33 mln.  

The purchase price was based on the closing price of Plug Power shares at NASDAQ on October 9, 2008. Plug Power is the world's leading developer, producer and operator of energy units based on hydrogen fuel cells. Mr. Vladimir O. Potanin, the Chairman of the Board of Norilsk Nickel, is the beneficial owner of Interros Group.

The acquisition of a 100% stake in OOO T-Invest from Interros Group for US3.2 mln. T-Invest is the sponsor of PEAT investment project, which aims to create a diversified business encompassing extraction and processing of peat and peat products.

Each of the target companies is a leader in their respective field and has significant growth potential. OGK-3 is delighted to announce these long-term investments and looks forward to working with the management of each company to implement their strategy and to realise profitable growth.