Entertainment Engie accepts Veolia's offer for its Suez shares, but calls for a deadline

12:20  01 october  2020
12:20  01 october  2020 Source:   ouest-france.fr

Environment. Veolia proposes to buy 29.9% of Suez from Engie

 Environment. Veolia proposes to buy 29.9% of Suez from Engie © CHARLES PLATIAU / REUTERS Veolia, if the offer for the 29.9% of Suez is successful, “intends to file (then) a public offer of 'buy' on the remaining shares (photo illustration). Veolia, the world leader in environmental services, announced that it had submitted, on Sunday August 30, a firm offer of 2.9 billion euros to Engie with a view to buying back almost all of its stake in its competitor Suez .

Engie SA Chairman Jean-Pierre Clamadieu said the company is under pressure to accept an improved offer for the majority of its shares in Suez SA, even as the French Veolia , whose initial bid last month was rebuffed by both Engie and Suez , has set Sept. 30 as the deadline for a deal to be agreed.

Veolia Makes an Offer Engie Shouldn't Refuse. Veolia ’ s bid for almost 30% of rival water-and-waste firm Suez sets a fairer price, and a friendlier tone. Veolia Environnement SA has wisely bettered its first lowball offer for 29.9% of rival water-and-waste firm Suez SA with a seriously sweetened bid that

Engie accepte l’offre de Veolia sur ses actions Suez, mais réclame un délai © Nathan Laine / Bloomberg via Getty Images Engie accepts Veolia's offer for its Suez shares, but calls for a deadline Engie welcomes the new Veolia's purchase price for its Suez shares, but the Board asked the utility giant to extend the validity of its new offer until October 5, 2020.

Engie welcomes the offer improved of Veolia on its shares (29.9% of the capital) in Suez . The Board of Directors of the energy giant said that it welcomed the additional commitments made by the utility giant, concerning its industrial project and more particularly the guarantees provided on the social level, and the proposed price which is fall within the framework of the mandate that it gave on September 17 to its Chairman and the Acting Director General.

Suez, Engie, competition… Will Veolia succeed in forming a new French giant?

 Suez, Engie, competition… Will Veolia succeed in forming a new French giant? © Ian Waldie / Bloomberg via Getty Images Suez, Engie, competition… Will Veolia succeed in forming a new French giant? Veolia's offer for Suez, which aims to constitute a French juggernaut in community services, is ambitious, but many obstacles still litter the road ... To hope to win its rival Suez and become a new "super champion" Tricolor of environmental services, Veolia will have to roll up its sleeves ...

However, Engie also asked Veolia to push back its deadline for accepting the offer — which had been midnight on Wednesday — in order to find a friendly way forward with Suez , something that seems unlikely considering the hostility permeating the deal. Veolia first launched the bid for the stake

Veolia raised its offer for a stake in Suez to 3.4 billion euros ( billion) on Wednesday, giving power group Engie a midnight Suez , which had previously described Veolia ’ s offer as hostile, said that there was no guarantee that its shareholders would benefit at the same price and conditions as Engie .

The Board considered that this new offer meets its expectations in terms of price and social guarantees. Given the importance of the stakes for all stakeholders, the Board decided to ask Veolia to extend the validity of its new offer until October 5, 2020 so that Veolia formalizes its unconditional commitment not to launch takeover bid that is not friendly. An extension request accepted by Veolia, which will allow Engie's Board of Directors to meet again before October 5, 2020 to rule on the offer.

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For weeks, Suez, a giant in environmental services, has been opposed to the maneuver of its rival Veolia . But it was until now unable to mount an alternative offer with investors in order to maintain its independence. However, Thursday morning, the Ardian fund finally announced in a press release that it had "informed Engie of its interest in acquiring a 29.9% stake in Suez held by Engie," AFP reports. "This mark of interest is supported by the board of directors of Suez, and by the director representing the employees", highlighted the investment company, historically linked to the insurer Axa.

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Veolia has now raised its offer to 18 euros a share , or approximately 3.4 billion ( billion). “ Veolia is improving the price of its offer to purchase the 29.9% stake of Suez from Engie , increasing it to €18 per If the offer is accepted , Veolia will file a voluntary tender offer for the remaining Suez shares .

Engie said Veolia ’ s August 30 offer of 2.9 billion euros (.43 billion) for a 29.9% share in Suez , could not be accepted under its proposed terms. Veolia has already anticipated possible antitrust hurdles and as a remedy would sell Suez ’s French water activities to Meridiam Infrastructure if the acquisition

It "wishes to form a consortium of private and public institutional investors, predominantly French, to carry out this project and launch a friendly public offer". No further details are communicated. Wednesday evening, Jean-Pierre Clamadieu, president of Engie, had indicated that Suez had presented at the last minute to the administrators of the group "a vague mark of interest which contained neither the price, nor the consortium of investors on behalf of which it was done, nor the conditions of execution ... ".

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The State - also a 23.6% shareholder in Engie - has expressed its wish to delay. "The State will not give in to any pressure. We are not a week, 15 days or three weeks away," the Minister of the Economy, Bruno Le Maire, reiterated on Tuesday. The stakes are high: Suez estimates that nearly 5,000 jobs could be cut in France if the operation were to be completed, which Veolia firmly denies. The latter thus reiterated its commitment to "maintain all employee employment in France". The inter-union CFE-CGC, CFDT, CFTC, CGT and FO of Suez had denounced Wednesday an operation "without any transparency, confidential, even pre-orchestrated".

It "is studying the possibility of asking the prosecutor of the Paris National Financial Prosecutor's Office to request the opening of an investigation into the conditions, which (to him) seem questionable or even criminal, of the attempted dismantling of the Suez group".

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