Russian Helicopters is aiming for a stock market valuation of up to $2.6bn (£1.6bn) if its initial public offering of shares in Moscow and London goes to plan.

The Russian state-controlled designer and maker of helicopters announced the price range of its intended IPO on Tuesday, disclosing that it wanted to sell shares at between $19 and $25 each.

It aims to sell more than $500m of Moscow-traded shares and London-traded global depositary receipts, with up to $250m of this coming from new shares.

Oboronprom, the vehicle through which the Russian government controls the company, is also planning to sell an unspecified number of existing shares but will retain a controlling stake.

If $250m of new shares were issued, Russian Helicopters would be valued at between $2.1bn and $2.6bn. The company said it needed the money to pay off debt and buy out minority shareholders in subsidiaries.

Following a programme of state-initiated industry consolidation, Russian Helicopters is the only helicopter maker in the country, and its export markets include China and India.

It is hoping to follow in the footsteps of other Russian companies that have carried out offerings in Moscow and London in recent weeks.

Nomos Bank, the country’s eighth-largest bank by assets, sold more than $700m of shares earlier this month, just above the middle of its predicted price range, while Rusagro, a sugar and pork producer, priced its offer near the bottom of its range.

However, Euroset, a Russian telephone handset retailer, pulled its offer this month, reviving memories of an unsuccessful wave of Russian IPO attempts early in 2011.

BofA Merrill Lynch, BNP Paribas and VTB Capital are acting as joint global co-ordinators and joint bookrunners for the Russian Helicopters offer, whose price is expected to be announced on May 11 or thereabouts.

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