Goldman and SocGen advising French government on EDF deal – sources
PARIS (Reuters) – The French government is being advised by Goldman Sachs and Societe Generale on its multi-billion euro project to bring EDF back under full state control, two sources with knowledge of the matter told Reuters on Friday.
The sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said Goldman Sachs and Societe Generale were advising the government, which currently owns around 84% of the debt-laden utility. EDF is being advised by BNP Paribas and Lazard, the sources added.
The Financial Times, which first reported the banks involved, said that while no decision had been reached on how the state would assume full ownership of the utility, the government was leaning towards a tender offer to minority shareholders rather than trying to pass a nationalisation bill through parliament.
Goldman Sachs, BNP and Lazard declined to comment. Societe Generale did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
With the decision to take back full control of EDF after years of setbacks at its flagship nuclear division, President Emmanuel Macron’s government seeks to open a new chapter for the company at the heart of France’s energy strategy.
Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne this week said the state would “take control of 100% of EDF’s capital”, without specifying whether the state intended to buy the outstanding shares on the market or via a formal nationalisation procedure.
Buying the shares at the current price would cost about 5 billion euros ($5.1 billion), but analysts expected the government to pay a premium.
Barclays analysts put a price target of 11.10 euros on EDF shares, which traded at around 9.6 euros midday on Friday.
(Reporting by Mathieu Rosemain and Pamela Barbaglia; writing by Tassilo Hummel; editing by Richard Lough and Louise Heavens)