August 15, 2022

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Naturgy and Repsol fall under foreign rule in the midst of a gas battle

Naturgy and Repsol fall under foreign rule in the midst of a gas battle

barbarians at gas… The battle for control of natural gas supplies around the world has also reached Spain thanks to simultaneous changes in natural gas ownership Two of the major operators in the sectorHistorically under the leadership of Spanish shareholders but now under the control of foreign investment firms. Nature, with the arrival of IFM Investors, and RepsolAfter an almost complete withdrawal from construction company Sacyr after 14 years as its reference partner, these companies are in the spotlight in the market.

With gas prices in Europe at historical levels above €100/MWh, and in the United States at levels not seen since 2008 ($6/mmBtu), the supply of this key fuel for heating, transportation and electricity generation has sparked open bidding among the region The euro and China to fill their strategic reserves and face the winter with guarantees. Naturgy and Repsol are two major players in the LNG transportation sector (liquefied natural gas) and represents, according to the National Markets and Competition Commission (CNMC), 37% of final wholesale sales of gas in SpainAccording to the latest available data.

However, the greatest value for both groups is not their customer base, but their access to the raw material everyone is looking for in 2021: gas. deposits Repsol in Indonesia, Latin America and North America, with a post Nature As the main operator in Maghreb-European gas pipelines and Medgaz Which transports gas from Algeria to Spain, have become desirable assets for major investors. In addition, the two multinationals have gas-to-gas regasification infrastructure – essential for liquid tanker shipments – and methane carriers to transport them.

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The decision to offer IFM Investors’ takeover offer resulted in the transfer of 10.8% of Naturgy’s share capital to a Luxembourg company managed from the Cayman Islands, with La Información progressing on September 9. The company will not be strictly isolated when it reaches the company’s shareholders Where it agreed with CVC (20.7%) and GIP (20.6%) funds, which comprises 41% of the property, has supported its entry into the board of directors, as published by “La Información” from documents sent to the CNMV.

in this way, 52% of the capital of the gas company will be aligned NS Promote change in the board From the administration that chairs Francisco Raines. It consists of twelve members and five independents: Ramon Adele, Francisco Bellel, Helena Herrero, Claudie Santiago, Pedro Sainz de Paranda.

Someone will lose their chair because the inter-fund agreement is considering entering the IFM if it reaches enough participation to claim a position, as described in the takeover offer brochure. In addition to independent directors, Nature Seven Sunday, i.e. designated by the relevant shareholder.

Caixa Standards, which owns 26.7% of the capital, has Enrique Alcantara and Isabel Estape, In addition to Francisco Raines Who is the Group CEO since Isidro Faini was relieved in 2018. The Global Infrastructure Fund (GIP) was appointed Rajaram Rao and Lucy Chadwick, While Rioja Bidko, of CVC and the March family, is represented by Javier de Jaime and Jose Antonio Tore de Silva. With 10.8%, IFM is on the verge of suggesting a board candidate to come off a shortlist of Jaime Celes, Monica Castaño, Jose Antonio Pérez Roldán and Serge Morell.

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Unlike Naturgy, the oil company Repsol It will also witness a departure from its board of directors in the near future after the construction company sassier You have completed the liquidation of half of your stake in the company. After dropping below 5%, the group must give up one or both of the seats it now occupies Manuel Manrique and Jose Manuel Loreda. The group will turn 14 in the oil company capital next November, reaching just 20% of capital when Spain’s property bubble burst.

However, the depreciation of its stake and the debt crisis it experienced as a result of the real estate recession in 2008 gradually led to the selling of its shares. The last tranche of its participation was recorded as a deferred derivatives sale. Sayer was notified that part of it would not be renewed, which led to a reduction in its percentage in the capital from 8% to 3.9%, in line with its goal of maintaining just 3% by 2024.

The main result of this movement is that, For the first time, Repsol will no longer have a Spanish shareholder at the helm. Since La Caixa sold all of its shares in a similar fashion to Sacyr, the loss of references to the property left an investment bank (JPMorgan 6.85%) And two investment fund managers (Amundi, 4,5% y Blackrock, 5,2%) as major partners.

The only protection against entry of a foreign contributor like the one played by IFM in Naturgy It is found in the antiopas decree approved by the government of Pedro Sánchez in March 2020 With the outbreak of the epidemic. This “golden share” has been extended until December and obligates any non-resident investor in Spain to seek permission if they buy more than 10% of a publicly traded company, or in investments of more than 500 million euros.

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