London: Infrastructure giant GMR has emerged as a surprise bidder in the £300-million auction for EDF Energy’s Eggborough power station in North Yorkshire, a media report has said.
“An Indian billionaire has emerged as the surprise bidder in the £300 million auction for one of the UK’s biggest coal-fired power stations,” ‘The Sunday Times´ said in a report.
“It is understood that GMR, the infrastructure giant founded by G M Rao, who also owns the Indian Premier League’s Delhi Daredevils, has begun sounding out City bankers to line up financing for a bid,” the newspaper added.
EDF Energy’s Eggborough power station would be put up for sale next month, when hedge funds who hold the rights to buy the station exercise the option.
The hedge funds, including BlueBay and Deephaven, have until 31 August to exercise their option to buy the plant for £134 million.
“The deal came as the result of the restructuring of British Energy in 2002. EDF bought British Energy for £12.4 billion last year, but the European Commission allowed the purchase only on the condition that some assets were sold, including Eggborough,” the daily said.
Lexicon Partners has been hired to run the auction. Regarding the other major bidders, the report said that “most of the ‘big six´ utilities, including RWE, Scottish and Southern and Scottish Power are also expected to bid.”
“Once the option is exercised, the bondholders would not take possession for six months, but a buyer could purchase the option, however, giving them control earlier,” the report added.