Ayala unit concedes in takeover war, takes 19.9% stake in Australia’s Infigen

Photo from AC Energy's website.

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.

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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.