First State Investments: Long-term partnership with MVV
- First State Investments acquires 45.1 percent of the Mannheim-based energy company MVV from the previous shareholders EnBW and RheinEnergie
- Supporting the strategy geared to sustainable growth, decarbonisation and digitalisation
- Long-term investor with extensive experience in European Infrastructure
- MVV CEO Dr. Müller: “With First State, the solid basis for implementing our strategy with the City of Mannheim as a permanent majority shareholder is completed in an ideal manner.”
Funds advised by First State Investments (First State) will acquire the shares in the Mannheim-based energy company MVV Energie AG previously held by Karlsruhe-based EnBW AG and Cologne-based RheinEnergie AG. This was announced by the companies involved and the City of Mannheim on Thursday following the signing of the share purchase agreements. As soon as all of the customary regulatory approvals required for the closing of the transaction have been obtained, First State will become MVV's largest minority shareholder with 45.1 percent. The majority shareholder is and remains the City of Mannheim, which continues to hold 50.1 percent of the shares.
The Lord Mayor of the City of Mannheim, Dr. Peter Kurz, described the planned change in MVV's shareholder structure as an "important milestone for the further development of MVV". As a long-term partner, First State supports MVV's strategic course towards energy system transformation, which is in line with the city's sustainable policy. According to Dr. Kurz, the joint objective is to provide a cost-effective, secure and sustainable supply of energy and water in line with market requirements, as well as to secure jobs and to maintain and continue to invest and grow the company's value chain.
First State is a major international asset manager. For more than 20 years, it has been making long-term investments in profitable and sustainable companies in the utility, energy and transport sectors, in Europe predominately on behalf of European pension funds and insurance companies. In the European infrastructure sector, First State currently manages around 8 billion euros of equity capital. First State has long-term interests in several operators of electricity, gas and heating networks and wind farms, among others.
Full support for MVV's corporate strategy and climate neutrality goal
"For us sustainability is a core element of our investment strategy", emphasises Niall Mills, partner responsible for infrastructure investments at First State. “We are delighted to enter into a long-term partnership with MVV and greatly appreciate the endorsement of our investment by the Executive Board of MVV and City of Mannheim as the majority shareholder. We have been impressed by the Company’s strong progress in the transition to renewable energy sources and by its excellent position along the entire energy value chain. As the Company’s second major shareholder, we will be committed to leverage our expertise in energy and infrastructure to the benefit of MVV, its customers and the communities it serves.”
First State itself has been a signatory of the UN Principles for Responsible Investment (UNPRI) since 2007 and has long put sustainability at the centre of its decision-making processes. For this, the company has already received several awards in the environmental and social field. According to Mills, the long-term partnership between First State, the City of Mannheim and MVV is fully aligned and committed to driving the company's continued transition to renewable energy sources: "First State fully supports MVV's goal of being climate-neutral by 2050 at the latest. We will support the strategy of sustainable growth, decarbonisation and digitalisation. We are committed to the long term success of MVV and looking forward to working with our new partner and the management team on our shared ambitions and goals.”
MVV: Objective achieved with new shareholder structure
According to MVV CEO Dr. Georg Müller, with the City of Mannheim as the permanent majority shareholder and the new minority shareholder First State, the Mannheim-based energy company has "a very solid basis for successfully implementing our corporate strategy." In addition, MVV's focus in the sale was on a long-term stable shareholder structure. "We can achieve both of these goals with First State," said Dr. Müller.
As part of the share purchase, First State has signed a strategic agreement with the City of Mannheim. In this agreement, the two main shareholders affirm the great importance to maintain MVV's listing in the Prime Standard of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. In connection with the acquisition of the shareholding and following German takeover law, funds managed by First State will make a public takeover bid for the remaining shares in MVV via the subsidiary FS DE Energy GmbH. The offer price will correspond to the volume-weighted average price of the last three months before the announcement of this decision. The two major shareholders and the company share the joint interest of preferably maintaining a free-float in the current scope.
First State Investments
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D - 60322 Frankfurt am Main
Tel. +49 69 92037 144
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Tel. +49 621 293 2915
About First State Investments:
First State Investments are stewards of over US$160.6 billion (as at 31 December 2019) in assets managed on behalf of a client base that extends across Asia, Australasia, Europe and North America. With expertise across a range of asset classes and specialist investment sectors, our approach to investment is driven by a commitment to provide the best possible outcomes over the long term for our investors. To achieve this, we ensure our interests are aligned with our investors and uphold a culture of consistently acting in our clients’ best interests. First State is a leading manager of, and investor in, infrastructure assets. With more than twenty years’ experience in infrastructure investment, it is one of the longest established managers of infrastructure assets on behalf of institutional investors and currently manages in excess of €8 billion of equity invested across assets in the utility, transport and social infrastructure sectors in Europe, Australia and North America. In Australia, First State operates as First Sentier Investors, having rebranded from Colonial First State Global Asset Management on 16 September 2019. First State operates as a standalone business owned and overseen by the Mitsubishi UFJ Trust and Banking Corporation (MUTB), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Inc.
With more than 6,000 employees and sales of around Euro 4 billion, MVV is one of Germany‘s leading energy companies. Our activities focus on providing a reliable, economical and environmentally-friendly supply of energy to our industrial, commercial and private household customers. Their individual needs and expectations motivate us in developing innovative products and business models. Here, we cover all stages of the energy value chain: from energy generation, energy trading and energy distribution to operating distribution grids through to our sales activities and environmental energy and energy-related service businesses. Our corporate strategy is consistently based on making increasing use of renewable energies, boosting energy efficiency and further expanding highly efficient combined heat and power generation and environmentally-friendly district heating. We are also investing in our future grid capability and modernising our generation plants. In all our activities, we can count on the mature competence and expertise of our employees. They stand to benefit from secure and attractive jobs in future as well.