Vattenfall to sell transmission unit

Vattenfall is to sell its 50Hertz Transmission subsidiary, the owner and operator of its German transmission grid, to Belgian transmission system operator Elia and Australian Industry Funds Management (IFM).

Under the terms of the agreement, IFM will take a 40 per cent stake, with Elia taking the remaining 60 per cent stake plus operational control.

The agreed enterprise value amounts to €810m (£736m). According to Vattenfall, the positive cash effect for the company will be of roughly equal value.

Elia and IFM will take over the responsibility for carrying out the necessary investments in the transmission grid, further affecting Vattenfall’s positive cash flow.

The transaction is subject to approval from the European Union’s competition authorities and the German federal Ministry of Economics and Technology (BMWi).

‘We are very pleased to have found investors that fulfil all criteria that we have set for a sale, that they have a long-term focus, that they ensure substantial investments in network expansion and grant continued free access for all power generators and promote the flow of electricity across national borders,’ said Lars G Josefsson, Vattenfall’s chief executive officer.