Date
26 May 2017
Chow Tai Fook is gaining control of Alinta Energy, an Australian utility with about 800,000 electricity and gas customers. Photo: Bloomberg
Chow Tai Fook is gaining control of Alinta Energy, an Australian utility with about 800,000 electricity and gas customers. Photo: Bloomberg

Australia approves Chow Tai Fook’s takeover of Alinta Energy

Hong Kong’s Chow Tai Fook Enterprises Ltd. has won Australian government approval for its proposed takeover of Perth-based gas-and-electricity provider Alinta Energy Ltd.

The deal was approved with strict conditions, a spokeswoman for Australian Treasurer Scott Morrison said on Monday, the Wall Street Journal reports.

The buyout offer from Chow Tai Fook, controlled by the family of the late tycoon Cheng Yu-tung, valued Alinta at about A$4 billion (US$3.02 billion), a source told the paper last month.

The companies haven’t disclosed the financial terms of the deal.

Last week Morrison said he wouldn’t stand in the way of a A$7.3 billion takeover of energy-infrastructure firm Duet Group by Hong Kong tycoon Li Ka-shing’s Cheung Kong Infrastructure.

Approval from Canberra was a major hurdle for both deals, and comes months after the government knocked back separate bids by CKI and state-owned State Grid Corp. of China to take control of electricity-network operator Ausgrid, citing national security concerns, the Journal noted.

For Chow Tai Fook, better known for its jewelry business, the Alinta deal marks its first significant investment in Australia’s energy industry, giving it control of a utility with about 800,000 electricity and gas customers and a generation portfolio of up to 1,957 megawatts.

The company, which has stakes in real estate and resorts in Australia, has said that it plans to retain Alinta’s existing senior management team and that it intends to expand the business.

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RC

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