Four power operators express non-binding interest in IPTO

The first stage of a bailout-required international tender offering a 24 percent share of IPTO, the power grid operator, has been completed with four bidders submitting non-binding expressions of interest, PPC, Greece’s main power utility and parent company of IPTO, has announced.

PPC, controlled by the Greek State with a 51.12 stake, will now assess the technical and economic credentials of bidders to decide whether they qualify for the next stage.

Four companies submitted expressions of interest, these being Italy’s Terna, France’s RTE, an EdF subsidiary, and two Chinese companies, State Grid of China Corporation (SGCC), and China Southern Power Grid.

Second-round qualifiers will be provided IPTO’s financial details and time to conduct due diligence procedures before they submit their binding offers.

HSBC Bank, Citigroup Global Markets Ltd and NBG Securities are acting as financial advisors, while Rokas is PPC’s legal advisor for the IPTO tender.

PPC was granted permission to stage the IPTO at a general shareholders meeting on July 11. The deadline for non-binding expressions of interest expired yesterday.

A prefered bidder for the IPTO tender will need to be selected by October 31 and the procedure completed by February 28, 2017. Should Greece’s international creditors deem that the IPTO tender is not making satisfactory progress, then a process to full privatize IPTO will be triggered.

Besides the 24 percent offered to strategic investors, the current IPTO privatization plan also entails transferring 51 percent to the Greek State and offering the other 25 percent to investors through the bourse.