DUET completes $357m Duquesne sale

The Australian-listed investor has finalised a previously announced sale of its 29% stake in Pennsylvania utility Duquesne Light to the Government of Singapore Investment Corporation.

Sydney-listed investor DUET Group has finalised the sale of its stake in Pennsylvania utility Duquesne Light to the Government of Singapore Investment Corporation (GIC).

The sale of the 29 percent interest in Duquesne will generate A$345 million (€262.4 million; $357 million), which will be used to retire DUET’s corporate bridge facility, according to a statement.

DUET chief executive David Bartholomew said in the statement that DUET will now focus on its three regulated utility businesses based in Australia.

Earlier this year, DUET agreed to increase its stake in Western Australia’s Dampier Bunbury natural gas pipeline and Victoria’s Multinet Gas, a natural gas distributor. DUET also owns United Energy Distribution, an electricity distributor in Victoria.

Last September, DUET executed an agreement with GIC to sell the Duquesne stake for $360 million, according to a statement to the Australian Securities Exchange at the time. DUET’s then-chief executive, Peter Barry, said the sale process was “highly competitive, attracting strong interest from a number of bidders”.

Duquesne Light was taken private in 2006 by a group of investors which included Macquarie Infrastructure Partners, DUET and Industry Funds Management in a transaction valued at about $3.2 billion. The Pittsburgh-based transmission company provides energy to 580,000 direct customers in south-western Pennsylvania as well as to other utilities, according to Duquesne’s website.

In January, GIC also announced US investments in five Georgia natural gas fired power plants owned by Boston-based investment firm ArcLight Capital Partners. GIC has invested $100 billion across various asset classes in more than 40 countries, according to the fund’s website. 

DUET (Diversified Utility and Energy Trusts) is jointly managed by AMP Capital Investors and Macquarie Funds Group. DUET's shares closed up 1.2 percent yesterday at A$1.66.