Veolia Makes Increased Bid of EUR3.4 Billion for Engie's Suez Stake
By Joshua Kirby
Veolia Environnement SA on Wednesday raised its offer for the
majority of Engie SA's stake in waste-management company Suez SA,
offering 3.4 billion euros ($3.99 billion) for 29.9% of Suez.
The EUR18-per-share offer represents an increase on the French
resource-management company's previous offer of EUR15.50 a share
for the stake in Suez. Engie holds around 32% of Suez.
Veolia's new bid includes a commitment to maintaining full
employment at Suez in France. The company also said it would only
launch a tender offer for the remaining 70.1% of Suez on a friendly
Engie has been holding out for better terms. Chairman
Jean-Pierre Clamadieu told a French National Assembly hearing
Tuesday that the French energy company was confident Veolia was
ready to offer necessary guarantees around jobs.
Veolia said it proposed a six-month period for the related
parties to come to a deal.
Suez has been opposed to Veolia's approach, which it has
characterized as hostile. It argues that the offer undervalues the
company and risks antitrust issues and job cuts. But Suez itself
has come under fire, with Mr. Clamadieu telling the National
Assembly hearing he was disappointed with Suez management's refusal
to cooperate regarding a new offer.
He also criticized Suez's decision to place its water division
in the hands of a Dutch foundation last week, calling the move a
"poison pill" and "a serious error of judgement."
Write to Joshua Kirby at email@example.com
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
September 30, 2020 03:33 ET (07:33 GMT)
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