PARIS, June 30 (Reuters) - All options for the sale of Equans, the newly-created services unit of French energy group Engie, are being considered, including a possible listing, Chief Executive Catherine MacGregor said on Wednesday.
MacGregor also told journalists that the sale was attracting strong interest from industrial investors as well as from private equity buyers.
Engie had yet to decide whether it would keep a stake in Equans while granting the French state, Engie’s top shareholder with nearly a 24% stake, a golden share in Equans was not currently being considered, she added.
Engie is trying to simplify its structure by selling off some activities to concentrate on others such as renewable energy, streamlining its sprawling structure.
Two sources close to the matter had said on Tuesday that Engie was set to kick off an auction for some of its services assets, with first bids due in September for a newly-created business that could be worth between 5 billion and 6 billion euros ($7.14 billion).
French energy services rival SPIE and conglomerate Bouygues are among potential industrial bidders that will be approached in the sales process, three sources close to the auction said.
The company is also being marketed to private equity funds such as PAI Partners, Bain Capital, CVC, EQT and Apollo, several people close to the matter said.
The prospective buyers all declined to comment.
The services spin-off is one of the biggest chunks of Engie’s reorganisation. The gas and electricity group has said it wants to fold some services units into a business dubbed “Bright” for now, and which employs some 74,000 people, or 40% of Engie’s current workforce. (Reporting by Benjamin Mallet, Gwen Barzic and Arno Schuetze Writing by Dominique Vidalon, Editing by Benoit Van Overstraeten and Elaine Hardcastle)