DEPA, Shell agreement to be finalized next week

An agreement reached between DEPA, public gas corporation, and Shell, for the Greek gas utility’s acquisition of the Dutch firm’s 49 percent share of the EPA Attiki gas supply and EDA Attiki gas distribution ventures covering the wider Athens area, is expected to be finalized next week.

The gas utility’s shareholders – TAIPED, the state privatization fund, controlling 65 percent of DEPA, and ELPE (Hellenic Petroleum), holding the other 35 percent – are expected to approve the agreement at a shareholders’ meeting on Tuesday, energypress sources have informed, which will clear the way for DEPA and Shell to sign their local takeover agreement. Less than a fortnight ago, the DEPA board approved the DEPA-Shell agreement.

Once the two sides have signed, the agreement will be forwarded to the competition committee for approval, not expected any sooner than August.

As has been previously reported by energypress, DEPA’s takeover agreement with Shell was reached for 150 million euros – approximately 39 million euros for the EPA gas supply company and 111 million euros for the EDA distribution company. The total amount is within the value range estimated by the gas utility’s consultants – close to the lower end.

In another agreement, DEPA stands to collect 52 million euros for the sale of its 51 percent stake in the Zenith gas supply company in the north to Italy’s Eni, plus five million euros for dividends. This amount is also within the gas utility’s evaluation range – towards the higher end.

The finalization of all three agreements represents the completion of the first stage of DEPA’s transformation. The next step will entail splitting the gas company into two firms, DEPA Infrastructure and DEPA Trade, before selling 51 percent of the trading firm.

“The next stage, once again protecting the interests of the company, shareholders, workers, as well as DEPA’s historic role in the transmission of natural gas in Greece, begins now,” an official with a key role in the developments told energypress.