The company Macquarie Asset Management has approached potential interested parties in a stake in the main distributor of natural gas in the Czech Republic to submit non-binding offers. The Bloomberg agency informs about the offer. Investors from the Czech Republic may also be potentially interested. The main interested party could be ČEZ.
“Last month, the CFO of ČEZ, Martin Novák, made it known that the acquisition of GasNet would create fundamental favorable synergies with electricity distribution and other activities that ČEZ already provides. A possible acquisition of GasNet would also play into the cards of the state, or the cabinet of Prime Minister Petr Fiala, who himself states that it is in the government’s interest to gain greater state control over the distribution of energy in the country,” Trinity Bank Chief Economist Lukáš Kovanda comments on the event.
Initially, it was speculated that billionaire Daniel Křetínský might be interested in the stake. Daniel Častvaj, the spokesman for the Křetín holding EPH, told Nauzal that he would not comment on the matter.
However, reliable sources indicated to the editors that EPH will not apply for the purchase.
Last year, the net profit of GasNet, which is the largest gas distributor in the Czech Republic and whose gas pipelines cover 80% of the Czech Republic, fell to 1.89 billion crowns, which is 35 percent less year-on-year, the ČTK agency reported.
In 2013, Macquarie invested in GasNet along with British Columbia Investment Management and Allianz Capital Partners. In 2019, RWE (German multinational energy company) sold half of Macquarie’s share for 43 billion crowns. The remaining, minority part of GasNet is owned by the Canadian pension company British Columbia Investment Management Corporation and Allianz Capital Partners, part of the German financial group of the same name, Kovanda described the ownership relationships.