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CNP ASSURANCES

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Exclusive: Veolia, Suez $14.7 billion tie-up to win EU antitrust approval

12/08/2021 | 12:52pm EDT
FILE PHOTO: Logo of Suez

By Foo Yun Chee and Gwénaëlle Barzic

BRUSSELS/PARIS (Reuters) - French waste and water management companies Veolia and Suez are set to secure EU antitrust approval for their 13 billion euro ($14.7 billion) tie-up, which will help them compete with Chinese rivals, people familiar with the matter said on Wednesday.

The deal, agreed in April, followed a months-long bitter spat which included a court clash and Suez setting up a foundation to ring-fence its French water business from Veolia, later abandoned after the two reached an agreement.

Veolia shares doubled gains after the Reuters story was published, and were up 1.2% in late trade. Suez shares also rose and were 0.3% higher.

To allay European Commission competition concerns, the companies will spin off Suez's French water and waste activities and some international assets into a new entity called "New Suez".

New Suez, whose shareholders are Meridiam and Global Infrastructure Partners, state-backed Caisse des Depots and CNP Assurances, is now being reviewed by the EU competition enforcer as a simplified merger deal, meaning approval is very likely to be a foregone conclusion.

Additional remedies include the sale of some Veolia small industrial water treatment assets and mobile units to assist customers as well as Suez's assets in the field of industrial hazardous waste treatment, the sources said.

The Commission, which is scheduled to decide by Dec. 14, declined to comment.

The deal hit a hurdle in Britain on Tuesday after the country's antitrust watchdog warned of less competition and higher bills for regional authorities and gave the companies five days to offer remedies to address its concerns.

Still, the companies have already secured regulatory clearances in 14 out of 18 countries worldwide.

(Reporting by Foo Yun Chee and Gwenaelle Barzic; Editing by Elaine Hardcastle and David Evans)


© Reuters 2021
Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
CNP ASSURANCES 0.10% 20.92 Real-time Quote.-3.82%
VEOLIA ENVIRONNEMENT 0.38% 26.56 Real-time Quote.-17.67%
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Financials
Sales 2022 37 890 M 40 594 M 40 594 M
Net income 2022 1 578 M 1 690 M 1 690 M
Net Debt 2022 - - -
P/E ratio 2022 9,28x
Yield 2022 4,87%
Capitalization 14 354 M 15 378 M 15 378 M
Capi. / Sales 2022 0,38x
Capi. / Sales 2023 0,35x
Nbr of Employees 5 311
Free-Float 14,0%
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Mean consensus HOLD
Number of Analysts 3
Last Close Price 20,92 €
Average target price 21,55 €
Spread / Average Target 3,01%
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Managers and Directors
Stéphane Dedeyan Chief Executive Officer
Thomas Béhar Group Chief Financial Officer
Véronique Denise Lebey Weill Chairman
Hervé Thoumyre Head-Customer Experience & Information Systems
Evelyn Tortosa Compliance Director
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