Enefit Green, the green energy subsidiary of the Estonian state-owned energy group Eesti Energia, is asking Lithuania's Competition Council for permission to acquire renewable energy company Nelja Energia, which operates wind farms in Lithuania and Estonia.
The Lithuanian competition watchdog says it received on 5 July a request from Eesti Energia subsidiary Enefit Green to acquire 100% of Nelja Energia shares.
It was reported in late May that Eesti Energia is buying Nelja Energia for €289 million and will also take over Nelja Energia's liabilities worth €204 million. Eesti Energia is acquiring Nelja Energia from Norway's Vardar and other investors. Small shareholders at the end of May signed an agreement with Enefit Green for the sale of shares, which may bring along the transfer of all Nelja Energia shares.
Following the acquisition of Nelja Energia, the amount of renewable electricity produced by Enefit Green will almost triple from the present 0.4 TWh to more than one terawatt hour. Enefit Green last year produced altogether 372 GWh of renewable energy. Enefit Green owns four wind farms with a capacity of 111 megawatts, three cogeneration plants in Estonia and Latvia, one hydroelectric power plant and one solar power plant. Enefit Green produces energy from wind, biomass, water, mixed municipal waste and solar.
Nelja Energia owns 17 wind farms in Estonia and Lithuania with a total capacity of 287 megawatts. In addition, the company owns a pellet factory and combined heat and power plant in Latvia and has minority ownership in two biogas stations in Estonia. Nelja Energia produced 804 GWh of renewable energy in 2017.
The transaction concerns 100% of the shares of Nelja Energia AS. Vardar AS has agreed, through its subsidiary Vardar Eurus AS, to sell its 77% holding of the shares in Nelja Energia.
The remaining 23% of the shares is acquired from a number of Estonia based minority investors, including Solarcom OÜ owned by Martin Kruus and Atradius OÜ owned by Kalle Kiigske, both of whom are members of Nelja Energia's current management, and Ivard OÜ owned by Peeter Mänd, Vestman Energia AS owned by Aivar Berzin, JMB Investeeringute OÜ owned by Jüri Mõis, HTB Investeeringute OÜ, Ambient Sound Investments OÜ United Partners Investments OÜ and Kakssada Kakskümmend Volti OÜ owned by Hannes Tamjärv.
Lithuania's state-run energy group Lietuvos Energija (Lithuanian Energy) had likewise vied for the purchase of Nelja Energia.
Enefit gets green light from Latvian competition authority
The Latvian Competition Council has given the go-ahead to Enefit Green to acquire 100 percent of shares in Nelja Energia.
The Latvian competition watchdog said it approved the takeover because it would have no serious effect on the competition in the given market.
Enefit Green and Nelja Energia, both of which are registered in Estonia, indirectly own biomass-fueled combined heat and power (CHP) plants in Latvia; Enefit Green owns Enefit Power and Heat Valka in Valka Municipality, while Nelja Energia owns Technological Solutions in Brocēni Municipality.
"Operations of both companies in Latvia overlap only in the electric power generation and wholesale market," said Latvian Competition Council spokesperson Zane Gorškova, noting that the operations of said CHP plants did not overlap as they were supplying heat to different regions.
The Latvian authority concluded that as Enefit Green and Nelja Energia together would hold a small share of the Latvian electric power generation and wholesale market, the takeover of Nelja Energia would not change the market structure, notably reduce competition or place any company in a dominant position in the market. As a result, the authority decided to approve the takeover.
Editor: Aili Vahtla