Latin America: Engie prepares for transmission auction and mulls M&A opportunities

01 June 2018 - 12:00 am UTC

France’s Engie will continue to pursue greenfield opportunities through Brazil’s transmission auctions and is evaluating potential M&A opportunities, CEO Maurício Stolle Bähr said on 30 May.

Speaking on the sidelines of the Brazil Investment Forum 2018 in São Paulo, Bähr told Inframation, “We made a few investments (in infrastructure) last year. We won a transmission lot and we are now looking at other alternatives.”

Aneel’s 28 June auction will offer 2,600km of transmission lines in 20 lots across 16 states. Bähr said the company is considering participating in this transaction.

While Bähr said his company’s transmission growth strategy is focused “at the moment” in greenfield projects, it “may also evaluate M&A in the future.”

Bähr also reaffirmed interest in acquiring 90% of Transportadora Associada de Gás S.A. (TAG), a unit of Petrobras.

“We operate a 45,000km (worldwide) gas pipeline, so (TAG) would expand it in a country we are strongly targeting for investment,” he said.

The ENGIE CEO said gas should be part of what he labeled an “energy transition,” in which consumers will in future “pick” their preferred energy sources.

“In solar, we are investing in both distributed solar generation and centralized solar power,” the executive said.

Last year, Engie offered BRL 231.7m to win a 30-year concession under Lot 1 of Aneel’s transmission auction, emerging as the second largest bidder after India’s Sterlite. 

In total, it will invest BRL 2bn to develop and operate transmission lines in the state of Paraná. 

Engie is Brazil’s biggest private electricity generator, with an installed capacity of 11,059 MW. 

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