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Energiser Investments Plc LSE:ENGI London Ordinary Share GB00B06CZD75 ORD 0.1P
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DateSubjectAuthorDiscuss
11/12/2020
06:40
THEBUSINESSTIMES

Engie-backed EVBox to go public in US$1.4b TPG Spac deal
Fri, Dec 11, 2020 - 12:05 PM

[NEW YORk] TPG Pace Beneficial Finance Corp, a special purpose acquisition company, agreed to acquire EV Charged BV, a unit of French utility Engie that specialises in electric-vehicle charging technology.

The deal will create a combined entity, EVBox Group, with a valuation of about US$1.4 billion, the companies said Thursday. It will give EV Charged, which does business as EVBox, an implied enterprise value of US$969 million.

Engie, which acquired EVBox in 2017, will retain a stake of more than 40 per cent.

Founded in 2010, Amsterdam-based EVBox makes hardware and software, and operates a network of more than 190,000 charge ports in 70 countries. The transaction with Fort Worth, Texas-based TPG Pace is set to provide the company with the means to broaden its technology offerings and expand globally.

"We've built out a dominant pan-European position and are convinced that joining forces with a strong American shareholder will help us accelerate our growth in North America," Kristof Vereenooghe, president and chief executive officer of EVBox, said in an interview.



EVBox has developed products approved for utility rebate programmes in US states including California and New York, Mr Vereenooghe said. In February, the company announced it had leased a production facility in Libertyville, Illinois.

"We're expecting explosive growth in electric vehicles and are excited about the impact EVBox can have in reducing carbon emissions," said Karl Peterson, a TPG senior partner who oversees TPG Pace Group, the private equity firm's Spac effort.

The combined entity is expected to have about US$425 million in cash on hand, in part from a US$225 million public investment in private equity, or Pipe, raised from investors including Wellington Management, funds managed by BlackRock and Neuberger Berman, as well as Inclusive Capital Partners.

TPG Pace raised US$350 million in an October initial public offering, with a goal of acquiring a target with strong environmental, social and governance practices.

Other companies that make or provide technology for electric vehicles have turned to Spacs for fresh capital. ChargePoint, Fisker, Nikola, Arrival and Velodyne Lidar are among those that have struck deals to go public through blank-cheque firms.

BLOOMBERG

waldron
09/12/2020
10:31
ENGIE : Berenberg reiterates its Buy rating

12/09/2020 | 10:27am GMT


Lawson Steele from Berenberg retains his positive opinion on the stock with a Buy rating.


The target price is increased from EUR 13 to EUR 14.

la forge
08/12/2020
06:51
ENGIE North America partners with Hannon Armstrong to secure $172 million of investment for distributed solar-plus-storage portfolio
engieservices.us (PRNewsfoto/ENGIE Services U.S.)

News provided by
ENGIE North America

Dec 07, 2020, 16:45 ET

Share this article

HOUSTON and ANNAPOLIS, Md., Dec. 7, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- ENGIE North America and Hannon Armstrong (NYSE: HASI), a leading investor in climate change solutions, announce a new partnership to jointly invest in a Distributed Generation (DG) portfolio of solar and solar-plus-storage assets located across the United States.

The portfolio is comprised of a diversified set of community solar and commercial & industrial (C&I) ground-mounted, carport and rooftop solar and solar-plus-storage projects (around 70 MW in total) located across the U.S., including Massachusetts, Illinois, Vermont, California, Texas, and Arizona.

"ENGIE is pleased to partner with Hannon Armstrong on this portfolio, which further demonstrates ENGIE's leadership and strong commitment to climate action goals towards its clients. This new partnership reinforces the ambitions of our organizations," said Gwenaëlle Avice-Huet, Executive Vice President, in charge of the Renewable and Hydrogen Business Units France, responsible for the Global Renewable Business Line and CEO of the North America Business Unit. "This program signals further forward momentum as we work alongside our customers towards a carbon neutral future."

"We are delighted to expand our programmatic relationship with ENGIE with this latest agreement," said Hannon Armstrong Chairman and CEO Jeffrey W. Eckel. "This partnership highlights one of the key strengths of our historic core value proposition to clients of executing on scalable investment solutions for smaller, distributed clean energy projects that are essential to a climate-positive future."

The agreement will allow ENGIE to rely on committed capital by Hannon Armstrong through December 31, 2021 to finance DG assets across the U.S. ENGIE will retain partial ownership and provide development, construction, operational, asset management, and administrative services. Hannon Armstrong will provide capital to ENGIE through a unique structure that will bring efficiency to a forward flow of projects, leveraging tax equity financing through an upper-tier arrangement with Morgan Stanley. Hannon Armstrong's collaboration with Morgan Stanley on this portfolio represents an expansion of the firms' relationship in recognition of Morgan Stanley becoming the first U.S. bank to commit to disclosing portfolio greenhouse gas emissions and backing the push toward unified measurement of financed emissions via the Partnership for Carbon Accounting Financials (PCAF).

Distributed generation represents an important piece of ENGIE's U.S. solar-plus-storage market strategy as it represents a sizable share of the overall non-residential solar-plus-storage market. Distributed clean energy generation, including the community solar projects included in the portfolio, foster access to renewable energy and is a key component of the clean energy targets and ambitions of cities, communities, corporate and utility customers. ENGIE currently owns and operates approximately 300 MW of DG solar assets.

About ENGIE North America
ENGIE North America Inc. offers a range of capabilities in the United States and Canada to help customers decarbonize, decentralize and digitalize their operations. These include comprehensive services to help customers run their facilities more efficiently and optimize energy and other resource use and expense; clean power generation; energy storage; and retail energy supply that includes renewable, demand response, and on-bill financing options. Nearly 100% of the company's power generation portfolio is low carbon or renewable. Globally, ENGIE S.A. relies on their key businesses (gas, renewable energy, services) to offer competitive solutions to customers. With 170,000 employees, customers, partners and stakeholders, we are a community of Imaginative Builders, committed every day to more harmonious progress. For more information on ENGIE North America, please visit our LinkedIn page or Twitter feed, www.engie-na.com and www.engie.com.

About Hannon Armstrong
Hannon Armstrong (NYSE: HASI) is the first U.S. public company solely dedicated to investments in climate change solutions, providing capital to leading companies in energy efficiency, renewable energy, and other sustainable infrastructure markets. With more than $6 billion in managed assets as of September 30, 2020, Hannon Armstrong's core purpose is to make climate-positive investments with superior risk-adjusted returns. For more information, please visit www.hannonarmstrong.com. Follow Hannon Armstrong on LinkedIn and Twitter @HannonArmstrong.

ENGIE North America Media Contact:
Sandrine Deparis, sandrine.deparis@engie.com, (202) 855 3705

Hannon Armstrong Media and Investor Relations Contacts:
Gil Jenkins, media@hannonarmstrong.com, (443) 321 5753
Chad Reed, Investors@hannonarmstrong.com, (410) 571 6189

SOURCE ENGIE North America

waldron
06/12/2020
13:37
Russian Ships Move To Baltic Sea Areas To Resume Construction Of Controversial Pipeline

December 06, 2020 03:15 GMT

By RFE/RL




A Russian pipe-laying ship has moved into position to resume construction of a natural-gas pipeline in the Baltic Sea that the United States, Ukraine, and other countries have vehemently opposed.

German shipping authorities have issued an advisory for the Baltic Sea area where the last few kilometers of the controversial Nord Stream 2 pipeline are set to be laid and warned vessels to avoid the zone from December 5-31.

The Akademik Cherskiy reached the area off the coast of Poland on December 5, according to Marine Traffic tracking services.

Also on December 5, the Russian pipe-laying ship, Fortuna, left a German port apparently heading to a different location where another pipeline section is to be built. Norddeutscher Rundfunk (NDR) posted a video showing the 170-meter-long vessel being pulled by five tugboats.

A spokesman for the Nord Stream 2 project declined to disclose information about the ships’ plans because he wanted to protect the companies involved, according to NDR.

The repositioning of the vessels followed Russia’s pledge to complete the pipeline despite the threat of U.S. sanctions. The pipeline still has 16 kilometers left in German waters and another 60 kilometers in the Danish section yet to be built.

Russia's state-controlled natural-gas company Gazprom has moved to finish construction of the pipeline with its own resources after construction was thrown into uncertainty a year ago following U.S. sanctions on the project, which will double Russian natural-gas deliveries to Germany.

The United States argues that the Nord Stream 2 would erode European energy security at a time when relations between the West and Russia are at post-Cold War lows over numerous issues, including the poisoning of Kremlin critic Aleksei Navalny and Moscow's 2014 annexation of Ukraine's Crimea.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has faced criticism for backing the project, but there has been speculation that she might withdraw her support following the poisoning of Navalny earlier this year.

The U.S. Embassy in Berlin on December 5 called on the German government to halt construction of the pipeline.

"Now is the time for Germany and the EU to call for a moratorium for the pipeline's construction," Robin Quinville, charge d'affaires at the embassy, told the newspaper Handelsblatt on December 5.

This would send a clear signal that Europe "no longer accepts Russia's sustained malevolent behavior," she said.

The official added that the pipeline was not just an economic project but a political tool for the Kremlin to circumvent Ukraine and split up Europe.

Poland, Ukraine, and the Baltic states are fiercely opposed to the pipeline. Ukraine has complained because Nord Stream 2 would reroute Russian gas around Ukraine, depriving Kyiv of much-needed transit fees.

Russia, which initially expected to complete the pipeline in early 2020, has accused the United States of using energy sanctions as a "weapon" to open new markets for its oil and gas industry.

After the sanctions on vessels were passed, Russian President Vladimir Putin said he hoped the pipeline would be completed by early 2021.

The U.S. Congress is considering another bill that would widen the scope of sanctions to include any individual or entity providing insurance, technical certification, or welding services for the project.

With reporting by dpa, AP, AFP, and Norddeutscher Rundfunk

the grumpy old men
06/12/2020
10:25
ENGIE : Kepler Cheuvreux remains its Buy rating
11/30/2020 | 01:57pm GMT


In a research note published by Ingo Becker, Kepler Cheuvreux advises its customers to buy the stock.

The target price has been lifted and is now set at EUR 16 compared to EUR 14 before.

grupo guitarlumber
06/12/2020
09:35
Why The World Can’t Quit Fossil Fuels
By Haley Zaremba - Dec 05, 2020, 5:00 PM CST
Join Our Community

Have the recent pronouncements of the death of oil and reigning renewables been more rhetoric than reality? Yes and no. It’s true that peak oil is now closer than ever, and globally we’re seeing a more earnest effort to decarbonize than ever before, in large part thanks to green stimulus packages for post-COVID economic recovery. But for all of the advances that green energy is making around the world, it’s just not enough to achieve the kind of greenhouse gas emissions reductions necessary to curb the impact of climate change. In fact, it’s not even close. This week Axios reported on the “chasm between CO2 goals and energy production,” saying that “projected and planned levels of global oil, natural gas and coal production are way out of step with the kind of emissions cuts needed to hold global warming significantly in check.” This reporting is based on a brand new study. The second annual “Production Gap Report” is the continuation of a project developed in collaboration with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). The 2020 report was put together by the UN, the Stockholm Environment Institute, the International Institute for Sustainable Development, the Overseas Development Institute and the climate think tank E3G.

The purpose of the report, which is modelled after and alongside UNEP’s Emissions Gap Reports is to synthesize and communicate “the large discrepancy between countries’ planned fossil fuel production and the global production levels necessary to limit warming to 1.5°C and 2°C.” And, as it turns out, that discrepancy is still quite large, even after the COVID-19 pandemic took a huge bite out of fossil fuel demand and the oil and gas industry as a whole.

Related: UAE Oil Is A Vital Geopolitical Weapon Against China's Middle East Expansion

The report calculates the emissions that will be released from fuel combustion over the next calendar year based on projections and extrapolations of all the countries of the worlds’ planned and estimated fossil fuel extraction. The prognosis is grim. While meeting the Paris climate accord goal of limiting and maintaining long-term global warming to just 1.5° Celsius over pre-industrial temperature averages would require the global community to reduce fossil fuel production by a full 6 percent each year over the course of the next decade, right now most countries are reaching toward a reduction goal of just 2 percent--less than half of what is needed. Despite the fact that all 196 members of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) signed onto the Paris Agreement, according to the 2020 Production Gap report, "countries are instead planning and projecting an average annual increase of 2 percent, which by 2030 would result in more than double the production consistent with the 1.5°C limit."

While the world is heading in the right direction overall to bring down greenhouse gas emissions on the eve of catastrophic climate change, it simply isn’t doing so with enough urgency. For example, while coal has had an especially rough year and seems to be on its very last legs as an industry, it would need to see a whopping 11 percent production cut every year until 2030 to comply with the 1.5°C pathway. It’s hard to see that happening when countries like China are falling back on coal in times of economic and energy insecurity.

Similarly, while OPEC+ is mulling over the idea of extending production cuts to keep oil prices afloat during this extended oil demand downturn, it would be shortsighted and naive to think that means the end of oil is upon us. While we may very well be living in the era of peak oil, that is a far cry from seeing a 6 percent annual decrease of the fuel that still overwhelmingly powers the global economy.

Ultimately, in spite of all the lofty rhetoric, “the pandemic-related production declines this year won't lead to the long-term changes needed to get on track toward those temperature targets.” For that we need human intervention and intentional economic and political restructuring, not just viral disruption.

By Haley Zaremba for Oilprice.com

sarkasm
05/12/2020
05:42
U.S. defense bill aims to thwart Russia's Nord Stream 2 pipeline
Dec. 04, 2020 5:45 PM ETPublic Joint Stock Company Gazprom (OGZPY)By: Carl Surran, SA News Editor43 Comments

The FY 2021 National Defense Authorization Act contains sanctions that backers say will halt the Russia-to-Germany Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project.
The sanctions will seek to deprive Russia of the capability to upgrade Gazprom's (OTCPK:OGZPY) vessel to lay the type of pipe used in the project, as well as required insurance and certifications.
The NDAA is expected to win passage by the U.S. House early next week and soon after by the Senate, but Pres. Trump has warned he would veto the bill over a provision to strip the names of Confederate military leaders from U.S. bases, among other reasons.
Nord Stream 2's European financial backers are Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B), BASF (OTCQX:BASFY), Uniper (OTC:UNPPY), OMV (OTCPK:OMVJF) and Engie (OTCPK:ENGIY).
The NDAA authorizes $732B in discretionary spending for U.S. defense, including $10B to buy 93 Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT) F-35 fighter jets after the Trump administration requested 79, and the Virginia-class submarine made by General Dynamics (NYSE:GD) and Huntington Ingalls (NYSE:HII).

grupo
04/12/2020
18:08
Brent Crude Oil NYMEX 48.99 +0.57%
Gasoline NYMEX 1.27 +0.37%
Natural Gas NYMEX 2.50 +2.54%
WTI 45.87 USD +0.45%


FTSE 100
6,550.23 +0.92%
Dow Jones
30,137.55 +0.56%
CAC 40
5,609.15 +0.62%
SBF 120
4,436.26 +0.66%
Euro STOXX 50
3,539.27 +0.58%
DAX
13,298.96 +0.35%
Ftse Mib
22,160.57 +0.70%



Eni
8.744 +3.45%


Total
37.69 +3.36%


Engie
12.5 -0.68%

Orange
10.545 +0.72%



Bp
276.95 +3.92%

Vodafone
130.16 +2.36%

Royal Dutch Shell A
1,402.4 +3.39%



Royal Dutch Shell B
1,351.4 +3.21%


Tullow Oil (TLW)
34.13: 2.56 (8.11%)

waldron
04/12/2020
09:40
News
OPEC+ decides to increase oil production by 500,000 b/d from 2021

Oil & GasUpstreamProduction

By NS Energy Staff Writer 04 Dec 2020

OPEC and non-OPEC the countries have agreed to increase the oil production effective from January 2021
russia-112445_640

The 12th OPEC and non-OPEC ministerial meeting concludes. (Credit: David Mark from Pixabay)

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and non-OPEC countries have decided to increase oil production by 500,000 barrels per day (bpd).

At the 12th OPEC and non-OPEC Ministerial Meeting (ONOMM) held via videoconference, the countries have agreed to increase the oil production effective from January 2021.

In a press statement, Opec said: “In light of the current oil market fundamentals and the outlook for 2021, the Meeting agreed to reconfirm the existing commitment under the DoC (Declaration of Cooperation) decision from 12 April 2020, then amended in June and September 2020, to gradually return 2 mb/d, given consideration to market conditions.”

Additionally, the participating countries of the DoC have agreed to assess market conditions by holding monthly OPEC and non-OPEC ministerial meetings starting in 2021.

Upon assessing, the countries will decide on further adjustments for oil production for the following month with monthly adjustments set not more than 0.5 million barrels per day (mb/d).

The DoC participating countries have decided to voluntary adjust production by 0.5 mb/d from 7.7 mb/d to 7.2 mb/d, starting in January 2021.

In the meeting, the countries have also agreed to extend the compensation period established from the 11th ONOMM until the end of March 2021 to ensure full compensation from the DoC countries of over production in in previous months.

Opec said in a statement: “Looking ahead, the Meeting emphasized that it was vital that DoC participants, and all major producers, remain fully committed to efforts aimed at balancing and stabilizing the market.

“It noted that renewed lockdowns, due to more stringent COVID-19 containment measures, continue to impact the global economy and oil demand recovery, with prevailing uncertainties over the winter months.”

The latest meeting follows the decision made by OPEC+ in October 2020 to support the oil market amid weak demand due to a second wave of the coronavirus.

waldron
03/12/2020
19:55
ANNOUNCEMENT 18 Nov 2020

In November 2020, the European Investment Bank (EIB) and Engie signed a EUR 466 million (approx. USD 516 million) loan to finance the company’s optimisation activities of its heat/cooling network.

sarkasm
02/12/2020
13:10
Germany may have found loophole to dodge US sanctions against Russia's Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline – report

2 Dec, 2020 09:02

Germany may have found loophole to dodge US sanctions against Russia's Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline – report


Germany may create a special fund to bypass restrictions imposed by the US government on the Russian-led gas pipeline project Nord Stream 2, Bild tabloid has reported, quoting unnamed sources.

The slush fund is aimed at tackling the problems of climate change, and may identify the project as the most important element of environmental protection. The measure is reportedly being considered by local authorities in the German state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern.

Under the plan, the state government would reportedly launch an enterprise whose products and services would be used only for completing the construction of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline.

The fund would provide German firms with an opportunity to supply services to the Russian side. Technically, German companies won't cooperate with the Nord Stream 2 project, led by Russian energy giant Gazprom, and therefore won't become subject to the US sanctions.

The pipeline is being constructed by Gazprom's subsidiary Nord Stream 2 AG in close cooperation with five European energy majors. The gas route, which runs under the Baltic Sea, is set to double the existing pipeline's capacity of 55 billion cubic meters annually.


The project faced sharp criticism from Washington which has repeatedly blasted Europe for over-reliance on Russian energy supplies, and accused Russia of monopolizing the European energy market.

Seeking to boost sales of US liquefied natural gas to Europe, the White House issued special guidelines for its Protecting Europe's Energy Security Act (PEESA), allowing the State Department to introduce sanctions against each and every firm cooperating with the Russian energy project.

RT.COM

maywillow
02/12/2020
09:07
Engie Latam increases stake in Chilean subsidiary

Published 01 December 2020 Last Updated 01 Dec 2020 10:12

Tags Renewables Latin America

Carmen Arroyo



The Latin American subsidiary of France’s Engie has increased its stake in its Chilean affiliate Engie Energia Chile (EECL) by 7.23%

la forge
30/11/2020
18:13
Brent Crude Oil NYMEX 47.36 -1.84%
Gasoline NYMEX 1.23 -2.56%
Natural Gas NYMEX 2.90 +1.83%
WTI 44.845 USD -0.69%


FTSE 100
6,266.19 -1.59%
Dow Jones
29,564.16 -1.16%
CAC 40
5,575.16 -0.41%
SBF 120
4,408.75 -0.44%
Euro STOXX 50
3,492.54 -1.24%
DAX
13,291.16 -0.33%
Ftse Mib
22,191.88 -0.72%



Eni
8.303 -3.25%


Total
36.57 -3.00%



Engie
12.51 -0.08%

Orange
10.655 -0.33%



Bp
247.65 -5.80%

Vodafone
123.68 -0.98%

Royal Dutch Shell A
1,271.2 -5.09%


Royal Dutch Shell B
1,234.2 -5.35%

TULLOW
27.87 -3.83% (-1.11)

waldron
30/11/2020
08:10
Russia's Nord Stream 2 pipeline project set to restart after year's hiatus
Nov. 29, 2020 9:53 PM ETPublic Joint Stock Company Gazprom (OGZPY)By: Carl Surran, SA News Editor16 Comments

Construction work is set to resume later this week on the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline after being stopped for a year because of U.S. sanctions designed to end the pipeline that will bring Russian gas to Germany.

Nord Stream 2 says undersea pipe-laying work will resume on a 2.6-km section of each of the gas pipeline's branches within Germany's exclusive economic zone.

The Gazprom-led (OTCPK:OGZPY) project, designed to deliver up to 55B cm/year when completed, would double the amount of natural gas that Germany can import from Russia, raising the ire of the U.S. government, which says the pipeline will increase European dependence on Russian energy supplies.

The U.S. Congress has been considering another bill that would widen the scope of sanctions to include any individual or entity providing insurance, technical certification or welding services for the project.

But so far, none of Nord Stream 2's European financial backers - Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B), Germany's Uniper (OTC:UNPPY) and BASF (OTCQX:BASFY), Austria's OMV (OTCPK:OMVJF) and France's Engie (OTCPK:ENGIY) - have pulled out despite the escalating U.S. anger.

waldron
27/11/2020
17:39
Brent Crude Oil NYMEX 48.00 +0.76%
Gasoline NYMEX 1.26 +0.55%
Natural Gas NYMEX 2.84 -2.87%
WTI 45.31 USD +0.78%

FTSE 100
6,367.58 +0.07%
Dow Jones
29,890.79 +0.06%
CAC 40
5,598.18 +0.56%
SBF 120
4,428.16 +0.61%
Euro STOXX 50
3,527.79 +0.32%
DAX
13,335.68 +0.37%
Ftse Mib
22,343.09 +0.64%



Eni
8.582 +0.28%



Total
37.7 +0.90%



Engie
12.52 -0.04%

Orange
10.69 +1.47%



Bp
262.9 -0.23%

Vodafone
124.9 -0.62%

Royal Dutch Shell A
1,339.4 -0.06%



Royal Dutch Shell B
1,304 +0.40%

Tullow Oil (TLW)
: 28.98: -1.81 (-5.88%)

waldron
27/11/2020
15:37
Veolia Environnement SA's deal to buy a 29.9% stake in Suez SA from Engie SA has been in the works since late August, but the process has been anything but smooth.

French waste-and-water-management company Veolia bought the stake in its peer from energy company Engie with its second bid. But Suez has been opposed from the beginning and a legal wrangle has ensued. On Nov. 19, court bailiffs seized documents from the offices of Veolia and Engie, as well as investment firm Meridiam, as part of a court order requested by Suez.

Timeline

August 2020

At the end of August, Veolia launched an initial bid for the 29.9% stake at 15.50 euros ($18.47) a share. Engie had previously initiated a strategic review that included a possible sale of its Suez stake, which meant Veolia's bid was considered likely to succeed.

Analysts at Bryan Garnier said that it made sense for Engie to divest its Suez stake as part of wider streamlining, and that the acquisition would boost Veolia's international profile.

September 2020

Suez, however, was opposed from the beginning of the deal. Management expressed its opposition to Veolia's approach in September, characterizing the bid as "hostile." Suez said the offer undervalued the company, and that it had concerns over antitrust issues and potential job cuts.

On Sept. 17, Engie said it wouldn't accept the offer under the initial terms, but would be open to an improved offer. As expected, on Sept. 30, Veolia increased its bid to EUR18 a share, valuing the 29.9% stake at around EUR3.4 billion.

October 2020

On Oct. 5, Veolia said Engie had accepted the offer. As part of the offer, Veolia would guarantee job security for all Suez employees in France, while Meridiam would acquire Suez's French water-activities arm to preserve competition after analysts raised the prospect of potential antitrust issues.

Suez continued to oppose the deal, warning of "several serious anomalies" in the bid in a letter to French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire. It also voiced support for a rival bid from private-equity firm Ardian, which had expressed interest in buying the stake from Engie.

A twist came on Oct. 9, when a French court ordered the suspension of the stake purchase. The legal reasoning behind the suspension, requested by Suez, was that the company's social and economic committees hadn't been consulted over the deal. Veolia called the decision "incomprehensible" and "grotesque," arguing that only Suez management had the capability to organize such a consultation, and that its failure to do so was born of its opposition to the deal. Veolia said it would appeal the decision.

November 2020

Early in November, Veolia confirmed that it still intended to make a full takeover bid for Suez, offering the same EUR18 a share price for the remaining share capital. It said the bid would be launched when the Suez board of directors showed itself amenable. Suez responded by noting the lack of a takeover offer to date, saying the only approach had been via media reports. Suez stressed that any takeover offer would have to reflect the company's value, as well as set out the detail of the combination and any asset sales.

In an apparent further setback, Suez said on Nov. 19 that the Paris Court of Appeal had confirmed the earlier decision suspending the effects of the stake purchase. Since no committee consultation had been carried out before the deal was finalized on Oct. 5, the effects of the sale remained suspended until that took place, according to the ruling, Suez said. "Effects" in this context seems mostly to refer to the voting rights conferred on Veolia as holder of a stake in Suez. The company added that it had not received the necessary information from either Veolia or Engie to carry out the relevant employee consultations.

For its part, Veolia insisted that Suez had told the court that it had finalized the consultation on Nov. 5, and that since the consultation period was three months, it would recover all its rights relating to the stake purchase on Feb. 5 at the latest. Suez, however, disputed this, arguing that the starting date for the consultation hadn't been fixed.

The legal developments took a further twist on Nov. 26, when court bailiffs entered the offices of Engie, Veolia and investment firm Meridiam to seize documents relating to the deal, according to media reports. According to the reports, the court order was requested by Suez, which apparently suspected collusion between Veolia, Engie and Meridiam. Suez is also said to suspect that Meridiam's purchase of Suez Eau was agreed as early as July, even before Engie Chairman Jean-Pierre Clamadieu announced the company was considering selling its stake in Suez.

What's Ahead

Not only do the bones of contention remain unresolved, there isn't yet any agreement between the parties as to when they will be. Veolia says early February is the latest possible end to the consultation period Suez is insisting on; Suez disagrees. If and when these issues are resolved, Veolia will launch a full takeover bid for its peer.

As for the document seizure, Veolia, Engie and Meridiam have the right to request a counter-judgment to the court order, in which case the documents seized would be held pending further legal developments, according to French law.

Write to Joshua Kirby at Joshua.Kirby@dowjones.com



(END) Dow Jones Newswires

November 27, 2020 09:44 ET (14:44 GMT)

waldron
20/11/2020
17:46
Brent Crude Oil NYMEX 44.34 +0.29%
Gasoline NYMEX 1.17 +0.28%
Natural Gas NYMEX 2.78 +1.98%
WTI 41.86 USD +0.56%


FTSE 100
6,351.45 +0.27%
Dow Jones
29,392.74 -0.31%
CAC 40
5,495.89 +0.39%
SBF 120
4,344.64 +0.32%
Euro STOXX 50
3,467.03 +0.45%
DAX
13,137.25 +0.39%
Ftse Mib
21,698.05 +0.75%


Eni
8.125 +0.59%


Total
34.5 +1.14%



Engie
12.165 +0.91%

Orange
10.41 +0.24%



Bp
244.4 +0.27%

Vodafone
123.18 +1.25%

Royal Dutch Shell A
1,244.8 +1.53%



Royal Dutch Shell B
1,196.8 +1.23%



Tullow Oil (TLW)
25.37 0.62 (2.51%)

waldron
19/11/2020
14:03
Suez SA said Thursday that it hasn't received the necessary information to complete an employee consultation that would unfreeze a court-ordered suspension of the effects of the purchase of a stake in the company by Veolia Environnement SA.

The French waste-management company said that a court ruling confirmed Thursday that the effects of Veolia's purchase of a 29.9% stake in Suez's share capital remained suspended pending the completion of an employee consultation.

The Paris Court of Appeal confirmed an earlier ruling that said Suez employees had a right to be informed and consulted regarding the deal. Veolia bought the stake from energy company Engie SA.

Since no consultation had been carried out before the deal was finalized on Oct. 5, the effects of the sale remain suspended until the consultation had been completed, according to the ruling, Suez said.

"At this stage, Suez management still has not received from either Engie or Veolia all the necessary elements to respond precisely to employees' legitimate concerns regarding their future," the company said.

Earlier on Thursday, Veolia said in a statement that it would recover all rights in Suez resulting from the purchase by February 5 at the latest, three months after a date when, according to Veolia, Suez announced the beginning of the consultation.

Suez contests that Veolia will recover its rights on that date, and argues that the starting date for the consultation hasn't been fixed.

Suez has characterized Veolia's purchase of a stake in the company and its stated plans for a full takeover as hostile.



Write to Joshua Kirby at joshua.kirby@dowjones.com; @joshualeokirby



(END) Dow Jones Newswires

November 19, 2020 08:08 ET (13:08 GMT)

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