Germany's EnBW seeks partners for power grid business

Transmission lines. Author: Nayu Kim. License: Creative Commons, Attribution 2.0 Generic.

August 19 (Renewables Now) - German electric utility EnBW Energie Baden-Wuerttemberg AG (ETR:EBK) is putting 49.9% of its transmission system operator TransnetBW up for sale to secure financing for its investment plans in grids and renewables.

The Karlsruhe-based company has launched the official market approach for the sale of two separate stakes of 24.95% each in the power grid business, it said on Friday.

The decision for the sale follows an examination of options that was unveiled in February.

German development bank KfW will not directly participate in the bidding but it will receive a pre-emptive right for one of the two minority stakes and it will be able to exercise it after the bidding process on the market terms determined in the auction.

Newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung reported in June that the German government was planning to take a minority stake in TransnetBW through the state-owned bank.

The shares in the power grid unit will be sold through an intermediate entity that is yet to be established, EnBW noted. The electric utility will keep a majority stake in the business.

The proceeds from the divestment will be used to fund EnBW's EUR-12-billion (USD 12.2bn) investment plan through 2025. The company will pour about EUR 6 billion into electricity and gas grids and some EUR 4 billion in renewables and fuel switch projects.

TransnetBW is one of the four transmission grid operators in Germany and operates a network of 3,300 km (2,051 mi) in the state of Baden-Wuerttemberg.

(EUR 1 = USD 1.018)

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