E.ON SE has hired BNP Paribas SA to help sell an energy supplier in the Czech Republic it’s gaining as part of its pending takeover of rival Innogy SE, people with knowledge of the matter said.
E.ON plans to kick off a formal sale process for Innogy’s Czech electricity and gas retail business in the coming weeks, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is private. The assets, which E.ON is selling to win antitrust approval for the Innogy acquisition, could fetch as much as 1 billion euros ($1.1 billion), the people said.
The European Commission on Tuesday granted E.ON permission to take over Innogy from RWE AG in a deal that is set to transform Germany’s energy landscape. To win approval, E.ON agreed to divest most of its German customers for heating power, along with any assets necessary to operate in the market. It also agreed to shed a retail business in Hungary and cede its operation of German highway car-battery charging stations to a new supplier.
E.ON may also announce the formal closing of the Innogy transaction as soon as this week following the European antitrust approval, one of the people said. Deliberations on the planned sales are at an early stage, and no final decisions have been made, the people said.
Representatives for EON and BNP Paribas declined to comment.
The approval marks an important step in a deal that’s set to reshape Europe’s biggest energy market. As part of the deal, EON will become a grid and network player and RWE will speed its shift from a fossil-fuel power generator to a majority renewables player.