Friday, May 16, 2008

Au Revoir, EDF?: British Energy Rounds Up Some More Bidders

We wrote a couple of days ago we may have jumped the gun on the British _Energy British Energy story by declaring Electricité de France (EDF) the last company standing in the bidding for the nuclear utility. We did - or might have. While British Energy says it has more interest, it will not say who has expressed the interest or how serious the various parties are.

Here's how Bloomberg puts it:

Two of the three proposals received by British Energy were for more than 680 pence [about $13.29] a share, yesterday's closing price, said a person with knowledge of the offers, who declined to be identified because the matter is confidential. Centrica Plc, the U.K.'s biggest energy supplier, made one of them, a second person said.

Centrica is a bit of a surprise as earlier stories had them partnered with EDF.

Even more surprising is that one of the bidders is thought to be Suez, the French energy concern that complained that EDF might lock them out of the British nuclear market. We said then they might want to consider just competing and here they are - competing. Good for Suez, if the rumor is confirmed.

Various article are suggesting different bidders, including Germany's RWE (although Bloomberg thinks they're out) and E.ON and Spain's Iberdola.

Sit tight - this one's going to take awhile to play out - and let's see what happens next.

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