Billionaire Seizes Brief Lira Rally to Sell Turkcell Stake

(Bloomberg) — Russian billionaire Mikhail Fridman grabbed the opportunity of a short-lived rebound in the lira and a rally in global markets to benefit from the sale of a stake in Turkey’s largest mobile-phone operator.

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The disposal of 5% in Turkcell Iletisim Hizmetleri AS for about $205 million was done Monday through an accelerated share-sale process where demand outstripped supply. Credit Suisse Group AG and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. acted as joint global coordinators and book-runners for the deal.

Stocks and currencies soared Monday amid news of a promising coronavirus vaccine and optimism that U.S. President-elect Joe Biden’s administration will support global trade and economic growth. The lira rallied by the most on a closing basis in two years after Turkey’s finance minister quit a day after the central bank governor was fired, signaling a potential return to orthodox monetary and fiscal policies.

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