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GE open offer for Alstom units

Mumbai, May 5: General Electric Company (GE) today made open offers aggregating to Rs 2,340 crore ($389 million) to acquire stakes in two domestic subsidiaries of Alstom SA of France.

US-based GE is proposing to acquire 25 per cent in Alstom T&D India Ltd for a total consideration of Rs 1,672 crore and a 26 per cent stake from the shareholders of Alstom India for Rs 668 crore.

The open offers come in the wake of GE offering around $17 billion for Alstom SA’s energy business. GE will proceed with the open offers only if its bid for Alstom’s energy arm goes through.

Credit Suisse, which is managing the GE bid, said the board of Alstom SA had appointed a committee of independent directors to review the offer by June 2.

If the committee favourably considers the GE offer, the American company will enjoy an exclusivity period to negotiate a deal. It will hold talks with the unions and seek the approval of the shareholders as well as regulators.

Analysts said they expected GE to close the deal next year. As part of the proposed acquisition, GE will indirectly acquire 68.56 per cent in Alstom India. An Alstom SA arm owns 100 per cent of Alstom Finance BV, which in turn, holds 68.56 per cent in the Indian subsidiary.

On the other hand, GE may own 75 per cent in Alstom T&D India. Alstom SA owns 100 per cent of Grid Equipments Ltd, which holds 68.54 per cent in the domestic company. Before the acquisition of the power and grid business, Grid Equipments may, by way of an inter-se group transfer, pick up an additional 6.46 per cent in Alstom T&D India from Alstom Holdings SA, giving it a 75 per cent stake in the company.

However, the brokers are not excited as the offers come at a discount to the current market price.

GE has announced an offer price of Rs 382.20 per share for Alstom India, a discount of nearly 16 per cent to the closing price of Rs 457.50 on the Bombay Stock Exchange today.

In Alstom T&D India, the offer price stands at Rs 261.25 per share. On the BSE, the scrip ended at Rs 270 today.

 
 
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