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DEPA Infrastructure privatization attracts 9 international investors

Featured DEPA Infrastructure privatization attracts 9 international investors

Nine groups submitted a letter of interest in the full ownership of DEPA Infrastructure, a new company to be created by the partial division of the Greek public natural gas company's (DEPA) infrastructure section, by the deadline on Friday.

Currently, DEPA is owned by HRADF, Greece's privatization fund (65 pct) and Hellenic Petroleum (35 pct). Following the partial division, the two shareholders will own the corresponding stakes in DEPA Infrastrucutre, and act as its joint sellers.

In the phase that concluded on Friday, Greek officials said the following companies expressed interest, in alphabetical order:
- ANTIN INFRASTRUCTURE PARTNERS  SAS (private capital investments focused on infrastructure investments)
- CHINA RESOURCES GAS (HONG KONG) INVESTMENT LIMITED (the top natural gas group of companies in China, focused on gas distribution)
- EP INVESTMENT ADVISORS (energy group in Central Europe, producer, transporter and distributor of natural gas)
- FIRST STATE INVESTMENTS (European Diversified Infrastructure Fund II, based in Australia; also participating in phase II in the sale of a 30 pct stake in the Athens International Airport share capital)
- ISQUARED CAPITAL ADVISORS (UK) LLP (international independent investment manager focused on energy, utilities, telecoms and transport)
- ITALGAS SpA (Italy's largest natural gas distributor, third largest grid manager in Europe)
- KKR (KKR Global Infrastructure Investors III LP; international investors in infrastructures, inter alia)
- MAQOUARIE (MEIF 6 DI HOLDINGS; one of the top 50 asset managers globally)
- SINO-CEE FUND & SHANGHAI DAZHONG PUBLIC UTILITIES (GROUP) Co., Ltd. (private capital company related to the 'One Belt, One Road' initiative, connecting China to the rest of the world)    

"The great interest in the tender for DEPA Infrastructure's privatization is yet another proof that the government is on the right track and creates conditions for the attraction of capital and investments in the country," Environment and Energy Minister Kostis Hatzidakis said, adding that "the systematic preparation by Deputy Energy Minister Gerassimos Thomas, HRADF and DEPA's management was a key contribution to this effort."
Thomas said that the high interest expressed is "a vote of confidence to the country's plan for energy transition (...), a basic parameter of which is the development and upgrade of natural gas and electricity networks."