Fitch: AES Gener Gains Control of Guacolda; Neutral to Ratings

lunes 31 de marzo de 2014 12:50 GYT
 

(The following statement was released by the rating agency) NEW YORK, March 31 (Fitch) Fitch Ratings expects AES Gener S.A.'s (Gener) gain of a controlling stake in Empresa Electrica Guacolda S.A. (Guacolda) to be credit neutral, although positive from an operational standpoint. The transaction is expected to have no impact on Gener's capital structure given the company has signed a binding agreement with investment fund Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP) to sell substantially all of the acquired shares of Guacolda. Leverage will only be impacted temporarily until the transaction closes in the next two weeks. With this gain in operational control, Gener will be able to optimize Guacolda's operations in-line with the company's other affiliates. In addition, via this transaction Gener is gaining a new, committed partner for the asset in GIP. On March 28, 2014, Gener announced an agreement to exercise a preferential option to buy out the 50% equity stake of Guacolda held evenly by Empresas Copec S.A. (Fitch long-term foreign currency Issuer Default Rating of 'BBB') and Inversiones Ultraterra Limitada. As a result of this transaction, Gener will assume majority ownership of Guacolda, thereby making the latter a Gener affiliate. The purchase will be principally funded by a US$700 million syndicated credit facility provided by Deutsche Bank AG, London Branch, and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation. Subsequent to taking control of the asset, Gener will sell 50% minus 1 share of Guacolda to GIP at essentially the same price. This will leave Gener with a 50% plus 1 share stake in the asset and without a material change to the company's capital structure. It should be noted that going forward Gener does not expect to consolidate Guacolda into its financial results. Guacolda (National Scale Rating of 'A(cl')) is a 608MW coal power plant, which represents 4.5% of the total installed capacity in the largest electric network in Chile (SIC). The purchase price is US$728 million, which is equivalent to US$2 million/MW taking into account 152MW of additional power capacity under construction. Fitch currently rates Gener as follows: --FC and LC IDRs 'BBB-'; Stable Outlook; --International senior unsecured notes due in 2021 'BBB-'; --Junior subordinated notes due 2073 'BB'; --National scale rating and domestic debt 'A+(cl)'; Stable Outlook. Contact: Primary Analyst Xavier Olave Associate Director +1-212-612-7895 Fitch Ratings, Inc. One State Street Plaza New York, NY 10004 Secondary Analyst Paula Garcia Director +562-2-4993316 Committee Chairperson Lucas Aristizabal Senior Director +1-312-368-3260 Media Relations: Elizabeth Fogerty, New York, Tel: +1 (212) 908 0526, Email: elizabeth.fogerty@fitchratings.com. Additional information is available at 'www.fitchratings.com'. Applicable Criteria and Related Research: --'Corporate Rating Methodology' (Aug. 5, 2013). Applicable Criteria and Related Research: Corporate Rating Methodology: Including Short-Term Ratings and Parent and Subsidiary Linkage here ALL FITCH CREDIT RATINGS ARE SUBJECT TO CERTAIN LIMITATIONS AND DISCLAIMERS. PLEASE READ THESE LIMITATIONS AND DISCLAIMERS BY FOLLOWING THIS LINK: here. IN ADDITION, RATING DEFINITIONS AND THE TERMS OF USE OF SUCH RATINGS ARE AVAILABLE ON THE AGENCY'S PUBLIC WEBSITE 'WWW.FITCHRATINGS.COM'. PUBLISHED RATINGS, CRITERIA AND METHODOLOGIES ARE AVAILABLE FROM THIS SITE AT ALL TIMES. FITCH'S CODE OF CONDUCT, CONFIDENTIALITY, CONFLICTS OF INTEREST, AFFILIATE FIREWALL, COMPLIANCE AND OTHER RELEVANT POLICIES AND PROCEDURES ARE ALSO AVAILABLE FROM THE 'CODE OF CONDUCT' SECTION OF THIS SITE. FITCH MAY HAVE PROVIDED ANOTHER PERMISSIBLE SERVICE TO THE RATED ENTITY OR ITS RELATED THIRD PARTIES. DETAILS OF THIS SERVICE FOR RATINGS FOR WHICH THE LEAD ANALYST IS BASED IN AN EU-REGISTERED ENTITY CAN BE FOUND ON THE ENTITY SUMMARY PAGE FOR THIS ISSUER ON THE FITCH WEBSITE.