Romania: CEZ sells its assets to Australian MIRA

, SEE Energy News

Czech energy company CEZ’ assets in Romania comprise of seven companies, including electricity distribution networks, electricity and gas supplier and the Fantanele Cogealac wind farm. Closing of the transaction is subject to receiving approval from European antitrust authorities and the Romanian Supreme Council of National Defence.

CEZ announced that it has reached an agreement to sell its Romanian assets to funds managed by Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets (MIRA).

The divestment of selected Romanian assets is part of CEZ Group´s new strategy to divest chosen assets in certain countries. By selling Romanian assets, CEZ will increase its debt capacity and will be able to channel resources into investments in line with the current strategy, which is focused on decarbonizing the production portfolio, developing renewable energy and providing modern energy services in the Czech Republic and across Europe.

The sale of CEZ assets in Romania to funds managed by MIRA was approved by CEZ Group’s bodies just 13 months after the transaction process’ kick-off. CEZ Group and MIRA have reached an agreement on the sale of all three business segments that were included in the transaction: electricity distribution, energy supply and an operational renewable energy portfolio. CEZ Group remains active in Romania, focusing on its trading (CEZ Trade Romania) and energy services business (High-Tech Clima). Societe Generale (together with its group companies Komercn banka and BRD) acted as Exclusive Financial Advisor to the CEZ Group on the sale.

Head of MIRA EMEA Leigh Harrison said that Romania is one of Europe’s most dynamic economies, and its energy infrastructure is critical to supporting the country’s long-term growth and low-carbon transition.

CEO of CEZ Romania Ondrej Safar said that the company has often pioneered bold and innovative initiatives that have stimulated the consolidation and development of the Romanian energy sector. The company has been able to do this by endorsing digital transformation and pursuing a client-centered business strategy. With the acquisition by MIRA, it is looking forward to building on these results with an experienced long-term investor that will support its business going forward.

MIRA is the world’s largest infrastructure manager and is part of Macquarie Group, a top 10 Australian company by market capitalization. MIRA is a long-term investor with extensive experience managing essential electricity infrastructure around the world.

CEZ entered the Romanian energy market in 2005 when it bought the distribution company operating in Romania’s south, Electrica Oltenia. Electricity supply business serves 1.4 million customers. In 2008, CEZ started construction of the 600 MW onshore wind park near cities of Fantanele and Cogealac. Construction finished in 2012 when the park became the largest onshore wind farm in Europe. In 2011, CEZ added 22 MW of hydro capacity to its Romanian portfolio when it bought and modernized four small hydropower plants near Resita.