Further to the ongoing flow of news related to Veolia’s offer of August 30th to buy a 29.9% stake in Suez from Engie, the Board of Directors of the French gas and power utility met yesterday to analyse Veolia’s proposal. The Board thinks that “the offer cannot be accepted under its proposed terms”, said Engie in a press release.
Engie’s Board has mandated its Chairman Jean-Pierre Clamadieu, and Claire Waysand, interim CEO, to pursue an improved offer from Veolia, including assurances concerning due care towards their stakeholders and also concerning the quality of the industrial project. Chairman Clamadieu had reacted to Veolia’s proposal on September 4th indicating they might have to bid higher for Engie’s participation in Suez.
No alternative proposal has been submitted to Engie so far. The Board was informed of the ongoing discussions with Suez, and asked Clamadieu and Waysand to continue with such discussions and to examine any other offer Engie may receive.
Chairman Clamadieu has stated: “The potential sale of all or part of our equity ownership in SUEZ is consistent with the acceleration of our development in infrastructure and renewable energies. The Board will pay very close attention to the fair valuation of this equity ownership, as well as to the strength of the industrial project and the guarantees provided to all stakeholders.”
Meanwhile, the French government remains neutral and focused on protecting jobs: the Minister of Finance Bruno Le Maire said yesterday that “The state is impartial...The state in this matter is neither on the side of Veolia nor on the side of Suez,” reports Reuters.