UAC Energy Holdings, a company controlled by Philippine conglomerate Ayala Corp, has settled for a 19.9 per cent stake in Australian renewables firm Infigen Energy, conceding the bidding war to rival Iberdrola of Spain.
In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange, UAC Energy said its investment phase in Infigen was brought to a close after nearly three months of security purchases. It had originally lodged a bid to acquire the Australian renewable energy firm at a valuation of about A$777 million ($535 million).
UAC’s total investment in Infigen is valued at approximately A$178 million ($128 Million), based on the current Iberdrola offer price.
The company said its aggregate relevant interest in Infigen was acquired at a weighted average price of approximately A$0.793 per stapled security, which represents a nearly 14 per cent discount to Iberdrola’s current offer price of A$0.92 per stapled security.
UAC first made an offer to acquire Infigen at A$0.80, but Iberdrola countered with A$0.86, prompting UAC to match the bid. However, Iberdrola again raised the offer to A$0.89 and then sweetened it further to A$0.92.
During the bidding process, Infigen’s board had advised shareholders to accept the offer from the Spanish firm.
A Reuters report in June said Infigen had labelled UAC’s approach “opportunistic” just a day after it introduced its offer, and raised concerns over it being highly conditional and its means of funding.
In a statement, UAC Chairman Anton Rohner stressed that the firm’s takeover offer for Infigen was aimed at securing a material stake.
“The offer was not predicated on control, and was therefore not subject to a minimum acceptance condition,” Rohner said.
UAC’s majority shareholder is the Philippines-based AC Energy Group, a wholly owned subsidiary of Ayala Corporation. Over the past six months, AC Energy has invested in 700 megawatts of new projects in the Asia Pacific.
AC Energy CEO John Eric Francia said the company is committed to the Australian renewables sector, which, he stressed, will continue to form part of AC Energy’s core strategy.
In a separate statement, the Iberdrola group said it intends to integrate Infigen’s operational expertise into its worldwide footprint.