(Reuters) – Spie, a company that dates back to the construction of the Paris Metro rail network more than a century ago, plans to raise up to about 1.2 billion euros (US$1.5 billion) in a stock market offering that could value it at as much as 2.75 billion euros.
The energy services company said it would raise about 525 million euros in gross proceeds from the sale of new shares and as much as 694 million by offloading existing stock.
Chairman and Chief Executive Gauthier Louette told reporters the stock being sold would amount to between 35 and 48 percent of the business, valuing the company at between 2.25 and 2.75 billion euros.
Spie also gave a price range of 15 euros to 18.30 euros per share for the global part of the offering. Employees would be entitled to a 20 percent discount at between 12 and 14.60 euros.
The global offering is expected to close on Oct. 9.
Spie has said the proceeds will be used to cut debt, increase financial flexibility and pursue its development and growth strategy.
The company counts large energy companies such as Total and EDF among its customers. It also runs the air conditioning system for London’s Tate Gallery and maintains the training facilities for Manchester United Football Club.
Created in 1900 to work on the electrical infrastructure of the Paris Metro, its name derives from Société Parisienne pour l’Industrie Electrique. It was for a while part of the listed conglomerate Spie Batignolles, but Spie and Batignolles went their separate ways in 2003.
Spie is currently majority owned by private equity funds Ardian and Clayton Dublier & Rice, along with the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, the manager of public sector pensions in the Canadian province.
Managers own the remainder.
Spie competes with GDF Suez unit Cofely, Dalkia , Vinci Energies and Sodexo.
($1 = 0.7892 euro)
(Reporting by Andrew Callus; Matthieu Protard and Gilles Guillaume; Editing by Prateek Chatterjee and David Holmes)
Photo courtesy of Shutterstock