The Australian state of New South Wales (NSW) has sold a 50.4% stake in power grid company Endeavour Energy to a consortium led by Macquarie Group for A$7.62bn ($5.61bn).
The consortium, dubbed Advance Energy, comprises Macquarie Infrastructure & Real Assets, AMP Capital on behalf of REST Industry Super, British Columbia Investment Management Corporation and The Qatar Investment Authority.
The NSW government sold the stake through its poles and wires asset recycling program. It has now secured A$20bn ($14.7bn) for its state infrastructure rebuilding project.
It was in December last year that the government had initiated the sale process of the majority stake in its power grid.
The divestiture of stake in Endeavour Energy is the third and final power grid sale from the NSW government after the A$16.2bn ($11.9bn) sale of Ausgrid and the A$10.26bn ($7.54bn) sale of TransGrid in the last two years, as reported by Reuters.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said: “We now have A$20bn ($14.7bn) secured to go towards the new schools, hospitals, roads, rail and cultural institutions across NSW – forever changing the face of the State.”
NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet added: “We have seen how successful our asset-recycling strategy has been in driving the State’s economic performance and in funding the infrastructure projects NSW has been crying out for.
“Through initiatives like asset recycling and our strong financial management, we have catapulted NSW from the bottom of the national economic ladder right to the very top.”
The NSW government will hold on to a 49.6% stake in the power grid company. It will also retain its influence over operations as lessor, licensor and as safety and reliability regulator.
According to the state government, Endeavour Energy will be regulated by the Australian Energy Regulator like before.
The transaction had received the mandatory regulatory approvals from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) and the Australian Taxation Office. Besides, it has been cleared by the Federal Treasurer on the advice from Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB).
Image: NSW has divested its stake in power grid Endeavour Energy to raise $5.61bn. Photo: courtesy of dan/Freedigitalphotos.net.