GDF SUEZ and E.ON have signed an agreement with Energetický a Průmyslový Holding (EPH), a leading Czech power market player, for the sale of their combined 49% indirect stake in Slovenský Plynárenský Priemysel a. s. (SPP), the Slovak gas operator.
This participation has been held through a 50/50 joint venture between GDF SUEZ and E.ON since the 2002 partial privatization procedure. EPH will acquire 100% of the share capital of this joint venture.
The agreement values the GDF SUEZ 24.5% stake in SPP at €1.3 billion.
This transaction will reduce GDF SUEZ net debt by some €1.3 billion1 and represents an important milestone in the Group’s ongoing transformation following the completion of the International Power transaction. Disposals announced since the beginning of 2012 as part of the Group’s portfolio optimization program total more than €5 billion, in line with the objective announced in December. The objective of the new GDF SUEZ asset optimization program for the period 2013-2014 amounts to €11 billion.
The sale has been approved by the Slovak State and has received all necessary antitrust clearances. Closing is expected in the coming weeks.
Jean-François Cirelli, Vice Chairman and President of GDF SUEZ declared: “The disposal of our interest in SPP is a significant further step in our deleveraging strategy, and a move consistent with our goal to optimize our European portfolio of activities. We will pursue our development in Europe, focusing on a selection of attractive markets.”
1 Of which €0.1 billion in 2015.
GDF SUEZ develops its businesses around a model based on responsible growth to take up today’s major energy and environmental challenges: meeting energy needs, ensuring the security of supply, combating climate change and optimizing the use of resources. The Group provides highly efficient and innovative solutions to individuals, cities and businesses by relying on diversified gas-supply sources, flexible and low-emission power generation as well as unique expertise in four key sectors: liquefied natural gas, energy efficiency services, independent power production and environmental services. GDF SUEZ employs 218,900 people worldwide and achieved revenues of €90.7 billion in 2011. The Group is listed on the Brussels and Paris stock exchanges and is represented in the main international indices: CAC 40, BEL 20, DJ Stoxx 50, DJ Euro Stoxx 50, Euronext 100, FTSE Eurotop 100, MSCI Europe, ASPI Eurozone and ECPI Ethical Index EMU.