Suez-Veolia: Ardian refuses to launch a counter-takeover bid


Associated with the American fund GIP, the fund wants “the appointment of a mediator” to settle the file between the two groups.

Ardian snorts at the obstacle. The fund, presented by Suez as a white knight, refuses staunchly to go on a crusade against Veolia. On Monday February 8, the latter filed with the AMF his takeover bid on his rival, of which he is the largest shareholder since he bought 29.9% from Engie in October. An operation that the council of Suez, its chief executive officer Bertrand Camus, wants to prevent by all means: legal procedures, mobilization of unions and political power, search for allies capable of presenting an alternative to its shareholders.

The main ally is Ardian. Associated with the American fund GIP, it is ready to launch a takeover bid on Suez… but only if Veolia agrees. “We are not working today on the project of a counter-takeover bid, released Wednesday Dominique Senequier, the president of Ardian. We would be very happy if there was the appointment of a mediator. ” All those who try to influence the file (from Bruno Le Maire to the unions via Suez) are calling for mediation, which Veolia refuses.

4.6 billion euros in turnover

The group continues the victories in justice. Brussels on Wednesday rejected a request from Suez, which wanted to sanction the repurchase of 29.9% of its capital. Building on these successes, the assailant has every interest in continuing his offensive and waiting for the Suez general meeting by the end of June in order to gain the support of the other shareholders. It was only if Veolia encountered a disappointment that day, or a major legal defeat that the group would be forced to negotiate.

The Chevalier Ardian could then leave his paddock to allow Veolia an exit from the top. “We are aware of the activities of Suez listed as strategic by Veolia in January, details Dominique Senequier, outlining an exit consisting of the takeover of Suez by Ardian and GIP, followed by sales to Veolia in return for its 29.9% of Suez. This represents 4.6 billion euros in turnover out of a total of 17 or 18 billion. What is the point of such a hostile operation on 100% of the capital if there is only 30% of the activity that interests Veolia? ”

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