France to Pay $9.8Bln to Take EDF Private — Update

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By Cristina Roca
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The French government said Tuesday that it plans to pay about 9.7 billion euros ($9.84 billion) to take full control of Electricite de France SA, a step it says is needed to manage the transition away from fossil fuels at a time of energy crisis and the war in Ukraine.

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The French state plans to launch a public tender offer of EUR12 a share for all the shares it doesn’t already own in the energy company, representing about 15.9% of its capital, and take it private, the Finance Ministry said.

The offer values ​​EDF at EUR46.42 billion.

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The French government said it intended to take full control of EDF earlier this month. The move will ensure France’s independence and sovereignty on energy at a time when the climate emergency and the war in Ukraine make this necessary, it said Tuesday.

“This gives EDF the means necessary to speed up the implementation of the new nuclear plan that the President wants, as well as the deployment of renewable energy in France,” said Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire.

The company is at the center of President Emmanuel Macron’s plans to rely on nuclear power for the fight against climate change. To limit greenhouse-gas emissions, Mr. Macron has said France will build up to 14 full-size nuclear reactors and other smaller reactors.

The offer price represents a significant premium compared with EDF shares’ closing price of EUR8.48 on July 4, the day before the French state made public its plans to take the company private.

The ministry expects that the offer will be filed to the regulator by early September. The offer will also include other financial instruments.

EDF shares, which had been suspended from trading since last Wednesday at the company’s request, resumed trading following the news. At 0752 GMT, they traded 15% higher at EUR11.79.

Write to Cristina Roca at [email protected]


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