Faced with a deadline to sell a 10% stake, Montenegro’s state-owned utility EPCG cut the minimum price to EUR 87 million from over EUR 100 million, even though the package is worth just EUR 41.3 million in market terms.
Montenegro’s government-controlled coal and electricity producer Elektroprivreda Crne Gore (EPCG) published another call for the sale of 10% of its shares after there were no bids for purchasing them for at least EUR 8.63 apiece. It cut the minimum price to EUR 7.33 per share, or by 15.1%.
However, the company currently trades at just EUR 3.5 per share at the Montenegro Stock Exchange, valuing the stake at EUR 41.3 million. The minimum price now for the 10% stake is EUR 87 million.
The package can be sold to a single buyer in a so-called block transaction. EPCG said last year it would look for foreign partners for green energy projects.
The utility bought off the 10% stake from Italy-based minority owner A2A in 2019 for EUR 52.9 million. The shares carry no voting rights. If it doesn’t sell it by September 26, EPCG must write off the package.
In comparison, EPCG’s book value is EUR 770 million. The conditions for bidders didn’t change from the last call. The deadline is August 12.
EPCG is based in Nikšić, Montenegro’s second-largest city. It has 877 MW in installed power capacity. The company operates the country’s only coal power plant – Pljevlja, hydroelectric plants Perućica and Piva, and five small hydropower units.
The state-owned utility is facing a high import bill because of the impact of the severe drought on its hydropower plants. Furthermore, in April it started the reconstruction of the Pljevlja plant, which will need to suspend operations in the later phase.