Turkish petro firm ‘circling’ ČEZ JV

Another bidder is reported to have come forward for ČEZ’s Turkish joint venture, Akenerji

Markets & Finance|Energy & Green Biz
Chris Johnstone | 13.04.2011

Turkish petroleam company Turcas Petrol is reported to be interested in a stake Czech power giant ČEZ’s Turkish joint venture, Akenerji, according to a report by the business server Patria Online which cited the news agency Bloomberg.

ČEZ  said on Feb. 18 that it and Turkish joint venture partner Akkök Group had given the go ahead for Akenerji to accept non-binding offers from companies interested in it. Both ČEZ and Akkök Group have 37.86 percent stakes and share management of the major Turkish electricity producer. The statement confirmed initial reports by Czech Position that the Czech state-controlled power giant was prepared to sell its stake in the Turkish joint venture in spite of rosy predictions of growth in power prices and energy demand.

ČEZ said on Wednesday it could not confirm the latest report of interest, saying that Akenerji was handling potential investors. No deadline had been set for a decision on the sale, ČEZ spokesman Ladislav Kříž told Czech Position. Akkök Group is reported to be willing to sell its stake in the JV, opening up the liklihood of a premium price for control of the Turkish company if a sale ges through.

The Turkish joint venture involving Austria’s biggest electricity company, Verbund, was the first in early March to step forward and express interest in buying into Akenerji. Turkish energy company Borusan, which is backed by German electricity company EnBW, has also been reported to be interested.

ČEZ, which is around 70 percent owned by the Czech state, embarked on a major foreign expansion in Central Europe and the Balkans over the last decade. Now, however, ČEZ has set tough profit and performance targets for its foreign units and says those that do not fulfill them will be sold.

Turcas is primarily involved in petrol sales and oil refining but is also active in electricity production and natural gas sales. Profits in 2010 more than doubled compared with a year earlier according to reports.   

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