DUET selling stake in US transmission utility

The Australian energy group, jointly owned by Macquarie and AMP Capital, has started a sale process for its 29% holding in Duquesne Light, a transmission company serving close to 600,000 customers in Pittsburgh and surrounding regions.

Australia’s DUET Group, a listed owner of energy assets, has announced that its 29 percent holding in US-regulated utility Duquesne Light is to be sold.

DUET: focusing
on Australian

Duquesne Light – a transmission company distributing electricity to 587,000 customers in Pittsburgh and surrounding regions – is DUET’s only foreign investment. It was privatised in 2006 by a consortium comprising DUET, Macquarie Infrastructure Partners, Industry Funds Management and other smaller funds for close to A$1.6 billion (€1.1 billion; $1.3 billion) in equity.

DUET, jointly owned by Macquarie and AMP Capital, says it will use proceeds from the sale, which is expected to be concluded by the end of 2010, to finance growth opportunities in Australia and/or capital management initiatives, it said in a statement.

DUET owns stakes in several Australian energy assets together with Prime Infrastructure, which was born after Brookfield Asset Management completed a A$1.8 billion recapitalisation of Babcock & Brown Infrastructure last November.

More information on the sales process will be forthcoming in late August, when DUET presents its full-year results, the company said.