EUROPE WATER NEWS IN BRIEF
- From: Vol 11, Issue 3 (March 2010)
- Category: Brief
- Region: Europe
- Country: Belgium, Canada, Italy, Switzerland and United Kingdom
- Related Companies: Aqua Resources, BHU Umwelttechnik, Christ Water Technology, GLV, KPMG, Macquarie, Morgan Stanley, Northumbrian Water, Scottish Water, Thames Water, Von Roll and Waterleau
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* Following the closing of the voluntary public takeover offer for Christ Water Technology, GLV Inc. now holds 92.6% of Christ’s voting rights.
Remaining shareholders will now be squeezed out under Austrian law.
* Italy’s Constitutional Court has ruled that the right to set parameters for calculating water tariffs rests with central government, not regional authorities. The case was brought after the region of Emilia- Romagna established a law introducing its own “reference tariff” in 2008. The court ruled that allowing regions to set their own reference tariffs would detract from uniformity across the country, and would affect competition.
* Scottish finance secretary John Swinney has been holding talks with Australia’s Macquarie on a possible restructuring of Scottish Water, after KPMG was appointed to examine ownership alternatives. Swinney continued to insist that no changes to Scottish Water’s publicly owned status are planned.
* Swiss industrial Von Roll Holding has entered the water sector by acquiring German water and wastewater treatment specialist BHU Umwelttechnik. Von Roll, which supplies electrical insulators and transformers to the power industry, wants to leverage BHU’s process engineering expertise to extend its product and service offering. BHU posted revenues of CHF12 million ($12 million) last year.
* The Aqua Resources Fund will inject €20 million into Belgian wastewater specialist Waterleau by subscribing to a 5-year convertible bond. The new cash will help fund Waterleau’s expansion into plant ownership and services, and will also enable it to react to acquisition opportunities.
* The Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan formally put an end to market speculation in February when it announced that it does not intend to make an offer to acquire 100% of Northumbrian Water. OTPP continues to hold approximately 26.7% of the company.
* Thames Water has issued a $156 million 5-year floating-rate note, its first dollardenominated bond since 2000. Morgan Stanley led the note, which was placed with a single investor at a margin of 100 basis points over 3-month Libor.