Spear WTE Investments Sarl, a member of Australia’s Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets Group (MIRA), on Friday was declared the highest bidder in a tender to buy 49% of Hellenic Electricity Distribution Network Operator (HEDNO) offering 2.116 billion euros ( 3.7 billion Australian dollars).
Public Power Corporation, in an announcement said that the offer was valuing the company at 151% of its adjusted asset base, while PPC is expected to have a final decision.
PPC sources said it was the biggest privatization in Greek history and noted that PPC will be able to significantly reduce its borrowing (the debt/net earnings rate will fall below 3), while it will also fund its investment programe on renewable energy sources.
At the same time, HEDNO with the support and know-how over an international partner -and under PPC’s management- will develop an expanded programme of modernization and digitalization of its network offering better and more quality services.
PPC said Macquarie’s offer included net debt worth 804 million euros.
HEDNO operates a 242,000 km long grid, which brings electricity to about 7 million households and businesses across Greece and the Australian investor would help upgrade the grid, which mainly consists of overhead cables susceptible to failing in adverse weather.
Government ‘sells off public wealth, impoverishes society, and rules in favor of vested interests,’ says SYRIZA
The government “and its executives are celebrating the sale of HEDNO’s electricity distribution network to an Australian company,” said Syriza-Progressive Alliance in statement on Friday evening.
The privatization of energy networks and infrastructures built by the backlog of the Greek taxpayer and are the property of our people cannot be valued in market terms,” added the main opposition party, and continued to say that “when faced with conditions defined by energy transition and pricing crises, all advanced countries are strengthening public control over such networks and infrastructures.”
“The Mitsotakis government sells off public wealth, impoverishes society, rules in favor of interests, and it will soon be billed accordingly by Greek society,” it concluded.