Suez Shores Up French Water Stake with Nantaise

12 May 2015
Available with corporate subscription

On 28 April 2015, Suez Environnement announced its acquisition of Nantaise des Eaux Services (NDES) from Gelsenwasser AG for an undisclosed amount. Headquartered in Nantes, the French private water utility NDES operates nationwide, with a stronghold in the western regions of Brittany, Pays de la Loire and Poitou. As of end-2013, NDES employed over 320 people and had 150 contracts with local authorities, serving 750,000 people. This is the first domestic deal and the third European transaction that Suez has completed over the past year, following its share increases in Acea (February 2014) and Grupo Agbar (September 2014).

The acquisition follows a dynamic half year for Suez municipal concessions: the City of Lille (1.2 million served, €445 million contract) disqualified Suez’s renewal bid on 3 October 2014. But then between December 2014 and March 2015, Suez renewed contracts with Saint Cloud, Gennevilliers, Calais, and Alençon that total over €1 billion. In Suez’s Q1 2015 results, the firm has highlighted 4.4% growth in France water revenues based on these renewals.

Bluefield Takeaways

  • Nantaise reinforces Suez France in the face of municipal buybacks
  • Veolia, Suez, engage in competition for volume
  • Gelsenwasser exit underlines tenuous position of international expansion