Czech EPH expects RWE to announce winner of Net4Gas tender in Q1 2013.

By bne IntelliNews December 19, 2012
Czech energy group Energeticky a Prumyslovy Holding (EPH), one of the candidates to buy RWEs Czech gas pipeline operator Net4Gas, expects the German utility to announce the tender winner in the first quarter of 2013, EPH chairman Daniel Kretinsky told Slovak business daily Hospodarske Noviny in an interview. Kretinsky believes that EPH has good chances of winning the tender as the company is the only one with clear strategic interest among the bidders and according to him it will offer the highest price. Last week EPH bought a 49% stake in Slovakias dominant gas utility Slovensky plynarensky priemysel (SPP) in a deal worth some EUR 2.5bn. Other bidders for Net4Gas include Czech investment and financial group KKCG, US investment group Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP), Australian group Macquarie and German insurer Allianz which is bidding in a consortium with international investor Borealis Infrastructure. In November Bloomberg reported that RWE has put off for February 2013 the deadline for submitting final bids for Net4Gas as a dispute with major supplier Gazprom is complicating the process. Originally, companies willing to buy Net4Gas were to submit their offers by end-November. Net4Gas operates a gas transmission network of 2,500 km and is worth between EUR 1.4bn and EUR 2bn. The sale is part of RWE's strategy to offload up to EUR 7bn of assets by the end of 2013.

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