Chinese utility makes major acquisition in German energy sector
Beijing Enterprises, a Chinese public utilities provider, is to acquire German energy group EEW for 1.44 billion euros ($1.6 billion) in one of the biggest-ever direct investments by China in Germany, EEW's owners said on Thursday.
Swedish private equity group EQT, which acquired a 51-percent stake in the German energy-from-waste company EEW in 2013, said in a statement that it had signed an agreement in principle with Beijing Enterprises, pending clearance by the relevant authorities.
"The transaction is expected to close end of February 2016. The equity purchase price amounts to 1.438 billion euros and the transaction represents the largest Chinese direct investment in a German company to date," EQT said.
The record for the biggest-ever overseas acquisition by a Chinese firm is still the agreed takeover of Swiss pesticide and seed giant Syngenta by state-owned China National Chemical Corp, also known as ChemChina, for $43 billion.
EEW was formerly part of German power giant EON, until the latter pulled out last year.
EQT described it as the leading energy-from-waste company in Germany, with 1,050 employees at 18 plants producing electricity, district heating and process steam for industrial use.
It produces total 6 TWh (terawatt hours) of energy and generated sales of about 539 million euros in 2014.
© 2016 AFP