Alstom gets shareholders’ nod for sale of energy assets to GE

French power equipment maker Alstom has obtained its shareholders' approval for the €12.4-billion ($15.4 billion now) sale of its global energy businesses to the US-headquartered conglomerate General Electric, as per a stock market disclosure.

“The board had taken note of a limited number of recent positive and negative adjustments regarding the terms of the transaction. The combination of these adjustments should not have a material impact on the transaction,” Patrick Kron, chairman and CEO, Alstom, said.

The transaction is subject to the authorisations required from a regulatory and merger control standpoint in a number of jurisdictions. Subject to that condition, the deal is expected to close in the second quarter of 2015, the statement said.

It will be accompanied by the reinvestment by Alstom of part of the proceeds into joint ventures to be formed with GE and will be followed by a cash return to shareholders which could range €3.5-4 billion to be implemented through a public share buy-back offer, it added.

In June this year, GE had won the battle against Germany's Siemens and Japan's Mitsubishi Heavy Industries to acquire most of the Alstom's global energy businesses, which represent around 70 per cent of the French company's revenue, for €12.35 billion (or about $16.82 billion at that time).

As part of the transaction, GE will take over Alstom's lucrative gas turbine business completely; Alstom's nuclear, steam turbine, offshore wind and hydro power businesses, which it will run as 50-50 joint ventures with French shareholders, including the government.

Alstom is one of the world’s leading energy solutions and transport companies. Present in India since 1911, Alstom has capabilities in engineering, manufacturing, project management and supply of products and solutions for power generation, transmission and transport infrastructure requirements.

Alstom has two listed entities in India—Alstom India and Alstom T&D (transmission and distribution)—with business interests in power generation and transport. The French parent owns a 68.56 per cent stake in Alstom India and 75 per cent in Alstom T&D. Together the two firms employ around 9,000 people.

(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)

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