Jul 10 2012
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INTERVIEW: Saudi Acwa Power May Issue $800M Bond by 1Q 2013 -CEO
Tuesday, Jul 10, 2012
--May launch $800 million bond by 1Q next year
--Also eyes Saudi IPO by early 2014
--To expand into Indonesia, Vietnam after 2014
By Summer Said
DUBAI(Zawya Dow Jones)--Saudi-based Acwa Power may launch a $800 million bond by the first quarter of next year to take advantage of favorable debt market conditions, while the power and water plant developer is also eyeing a stock market listing, as it looks to expand throughout the region, the firm's chief executive officer said.
"Our finances for expansion are adequate and there is no specific need for us to raise debt, but we want to take advantage of the current conditions in the bond market," Paddy Padmanathan told Zawya Dow Jones in an interview on Tuesday. "As per our plan, we may launch an $800 million bond by the end of this year, or the first quarter of 2013."
Mr. Padmanathan said that the company is still eyeing an initial public offering by 2014 to benefit from the kingdom's dynamic stock market.
Acwa Power recently expanded its operations to Oman, Jordan and Turkey, and is bidding for projects in Morocco, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates and South Africa.
"In the next three to four years we would focus on these countries and expand our operations there...but hopefully after 2014 we would be looking at countries like Indonesia and Vietnam," he said.
Middle East states, in particular the Gulf, have seen demand for electricity and water soar in recent years as governments boost investment in new industries and infrastructure to diversify their economies and to accommodate for growing populations.
Oil-rich Gulf Arab countries such as Saudi Arabia, Oman, Bahrain and Qatar depend on foreign investors and debt funding to build and run their power plants and water desalination facilities under the so-called independent power and water project, or IWPP, model.
Acwa Power, established in 2004 in Riyadh, is competing for large-scale IWPP projects with international companies such as GDF Suez S.A. (GSZ.FR), Marubeni Corp. (MARUY) and Korea Electric Power Corp. (KEP), or Kepco.
On Monday, it said it has entered a consortium to acquire a solar photovoltaic, or PV, plant in Karadzhalovo, southern Bulgaria, in which it will hold a 42% controlling interest.
-By Summer Said; Dow Jones Newswires; +971-500-109-3356; email@example.com; Twitter:ZDJnews
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