US power plant developer AES Corporation will keep its stake in the Amman East plant in Jordan after a challenge from the other major shareholder, Japanese developer Mitsui & Company.
AES had planned to sell its 30 per cent stake in the plant, along with its stakes in a power project in Oman and two in Pakistan, but has changed its plans after Mitsui, which has a 40 per cent stake in the plant, exercised its rights as a shareholder to influence the structure of any deal.
“Mitsui had some agreements that have allowed it to dictate some terms of the sale,” one source close to the sale tells MEED. “As a result, AES Corporation will hold on to its stake.”
The US company is still planning to sell its stakes in plants in Oman and Pakistan.
AES’s stake in the Amman East plant is held through a holding company, AES Oasis, in which it is a 50 per cent shareholder, alongside Saudi Arabia’s Islamic Development Bank Infrastructure Fund. AES Oasis owns 60 per cent of the plant, giving the two shareholders each 30 per cent stake.
The Saudi fund still intends to sell its interest in the Amman East power plant, in a deal which will now be separate from the sale of AES Corporation’s other regional assets.
AES Oasis has yet to reschedule the deadline for final bids on all four plants after it suspended bidding on 31 August. Bankers expect AES Oasis to set a late September or early October deadline.
“It became clear that the bidders were not advanced enough in their due diligence to submit final bids by the end of August so we are looking to extend the deadline,” says the source.
He adds that AES Oasis should complete the sale of the plants by early December, although the Jordanian sale may take longer.
The other plants are Barka in Oman and Lil Par and Pak Gen in Pakistan.
AES Corporation and Mitsui declined to comment.