TNK-BP is jointly owned by BP and AAR, a group of Russian billionaire
shareholders. The two partners have been locked in a boardroom dispute
for much of the group’s existence. In June, BP said it intended to sell
its 50 percent in TNK-BP, which AAR signaled it would be interested in
buying. Among the other bidders for the share is Russia’s largest oil
company Rosneft, chaired by Putin’s former energy czar Igor Sechin.
Tuesday, AAR’s chief executive Stan Polovets said it had notified BP of
its intention to sell its holding as well. Polovets said AAR would
still like to buy out BP, but added that this notice to sell the stake
should give it “flexibility” in resolving the shareholder situation in
case their own bid fails.