EDF in talks on sale of RTE grid network

French state-owned utility EDF is mulling the sale of its power distribution network in what could amount to a $17.1bn (EUR15bn) deal.

Bloomberg reports that EDF are considering a stake sale or partial spin-off for later this year of Reseau de Transport d’Electricite (RTE) and is in discussions with advisers on the possibilities of offloading its share.
Jean-Bernard Levy
Insiders told the news agency that EDF hasn’t made a final decision and any deal is dependent on new Chief Executive Officer Jean-Bernard Levy settling on his strategy, and the French government agreeing to the terms, the people said.

While a sale process may attract large institutional investors including sovereign-wealth, pension and infrastructure funds, such potential buyers would only be allowed to bid if French laws that limit ownership of RTE to EDF or state-held entities are changed.

RTE employs 8,400 people and runs more than 104,000 km of electricity lines across France.

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