Australian superannuation fund AustralianSuper said it is planning to vote against the proposed A$15.35bn ($9.78bn) acquisition of Origin Energy by a consortium led by Brookfield.

AustralianSuper, which owns a 13.68% stake in Origin Energy, believes that the transaction consideration substantially undervalues the electricity and natural gas supplier.

In March 2023, a consortium led by Brookfield Renewable Partners signed a scheme implementation deed (SID) to acquire Origin Energy in a deal worth A$18.7bn ($12.5bn).

Brookfield, together with institutional partners and institutional investors GIC and Temasek, and EIG-backed MidOcean Energy are part of the consortium.

Origin Energy shareholders were offered A$8.91 ($5.97) per share, which is a premium of 53.4% to the company’s unaffected share price.

Origin Energy CEO Frank Calabria then said: “The significant premium placed on Origin by the Consortium reflects the value of our strategy and our advantaged position to capture value from the energy transition.

“We believe this transaction is a great outcome not only for our shareholders but for all stakeholders, including our customers, employees and partners.”

The transaction requires 75% support through the casting of votes at a shareholder meeting, and AustralianSuper’s shareholding can be adequate to invalidate the bid.

Earlier this month, Origin Energy announced that the consortium’s take-over bid is deemed to be fair value, based on an independent evaluation by corporate advisory firm Grant Samuel.

AustralianSuper contracted UK-based microeconomics consultancy Frontier Economics for the review, which said that the independent expert’s report created an ‘unrealistically low’ valuation.

The transaction price also undervalued Origin’s UK renewable energy group Octopus and Australia Pacific LNG, with valuation multiples below their recent deal values.

AustralianSuper, in its statement, said: “The IER valuation multiples are significantly below the multiples from a number of recent relevant transactions and the trading multiples of relevant comparable companies.

“The current offer from the Brookfield and EIG-backed consortium remains substantially below our estimate of Origin’s long-term value.”