The interest of the State Grid Corporation of China (SGCC) in 50Hertz has been great. For months, the Chinese state-owned company tried to buy a stake in the German transmission system operator from Australian infrastructure fund, IFM – specifically, the 20% share of Eurogrid International SCRL, the holding company of 50Hertz Transmission GmbH.
According to media reports, there was already a contract between IFM and SGCC. However, it hinged on the decision made by Belgian company, Elia, which owns the remaining 80% of the holding company, and had right of first refusal.
Elia used this right of first refusal, although it will not takeover the 20% share. As KfW announced, the German development bank has instead been granted permission to join the 50Hertz holding company, on behalf of the German Federal Government.
This is a so-called allocation business: “Opportunities and risks of the transaction lie with the Federal Government. KfW assumes no entrepreneurial or strategic responsibility for the action taken.Participation rights are exercised by the Federal Government, “said the development bank in a statement issued.
50Hertz has welcomed the entry of KfW as a minority shareholder, which shows how vital the transmission network is to Germany's central infrastructure.
“This commitment is also a strong commitment of the Federal Government to the energy transition in Germany, which we very much welcome,” said Boris Schucht, CEO of 50Hertz.
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