BUCHAREST (Romania), April 29 (SeeNews) - Romanian investment fund Fondul Proprietatea [BSE:FP], a shareholder in majority state-owned Hidroelectrica, said that the planned listing of the company is not possible this year due to coronavirus restrictions imposed by authorities.
The initial public offering (IPO) is likely to happen next year, but a longer period of restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic could delay the process, Fondul Proprietatea said in a press release on Tuesday.
"We maintain the opinion that the listing of Hidroelectrica is not possible this year, but next year. The company continues to take the necessary steps to choose consultants in order to prepare for the IPO," Fondul Proprietatea manager Johan Meyer said.
Fondul Proprietatea owns 19.94% of the issued share capital of Hidroelectrica, representing 41.2% of the fund’s net asset value as at end-2019.
"Of course, a longer period of restrictions will accentuate the potential of a postponement of the listing. But as we assess the situation at this [point in] time, we do not anticipate a major postponement, later than the first or second quarter of next year," Mayer added.
Earlier this month, consultancy companies Lazard Freres, STJ Advisors Group, and Deloitte Consultanta signed up in a repeat tender to provide equity advisory services to Hidroelectrica in relation to the IPO, according to a public procurement notice. The value of the contract is $1.75 million ($1.91 million).
In February, local media reported that the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is interested in acquiring a 5% stake in Hidroelectrica.
The energy company exited insolvency In April 2017, which paved the way for its listing on the Bucharest Stock Exchange expected to be the biggest in Romania’s history. The initial public offering of a 15% stake in Hidroelectrica is expected to raise 1 billion euro, the court-appointed administrator of the company said at the time.
Hidroelectrica is 80.06% owned by the Romanian state.