Veolia Pursues Asset-Light MENA Desal Strategy

1 Aug 2014
Available with corporate subscription

On 10 July 2014, Veolia announced the sale of its desalination, waste management, and energy businesses in Israel to Oaktree Capital Management LP. The transaction, estimated at US$340 million, includes its stakes in the Ashkelon desalination plant as well as a hazardous waste incinerator, landfills, municipal waste services, recycling facilities, and various wastewater treatment plants. Other stakes that are part of the transaction include the OPC Rotem natural gas power plant, the Ashkelon power plant O&M contract, and construction of several solar energy installations.

The sale supports Veolia’s ongoing focus on less capital-intensive business lines, and exiting Israel smooths the road for the firm’s expansion into other Arab markets. This completes Veolia’s exit process from Israel that the firm initiated in 2011.

Bluefield Takeaways

  • Israeli desalination market tapped out.
  • Recent contract wins underline MENA growth potential without equity investments.
  • Desalination offers a beachhead for adjacent municipal market opportunities.