German E.ON, RWE agree Innogy deal with major restructuring

Shares of Innogy fell 1% in 2017 their first full year on the German stock exchange. They’ve since advanced almost 6

The deal would turn E.ON into a major utility without major power generation assets, while Germany's biggest power producer RWE will merge the renewable assets of Germany's two leading energy companies.

The deal, which includes E.ON making a €5.2 billion ($6.4 billion) takeover offer to Innogy's minority shareholders, spells the end of the network, renewables and retail energy group, carved out from RWE two years ago, as a standalone unit.

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Share in Innogy, RWE, and E.ON all surged this morning as the markets responded positively to the news. RWE would also acquire "substantially all of" E.on's renewables operations, including the economic benefits as of the start of this year, and it would keep Innogy's renewables and gas storage businesses, and the latter's interest in Austrian utility Kelag. Further, RWE will receive the minority interests now held by E.ON's subsidiary PreussenElektra in the RWE-operated nuclear power plants Gundremmingen and Emsland.

RWE had been in talks with European peers including Engie ENGIE.PA and Enel ENEI.MI over the previous year on a potential transaction and was even close to reaching a deal with Iberdrola IBE.MC in late 2017, the sources said.

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"It's good if there are competitive and internationally oriented energy providers in Germany", she said in a statement. RWE will pay another 1.5 billion euros to E.ON to close a valuation gap that results from the complex structure of the asset swaps. One source said Australia's Macquarie MQG.AX had also been in the race.

Following approval of both companies' boards, the deal was expected to be signed shortly, said EON.

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Morgan Stanley analysts said the proposed deal would allow E.ON to expand its networks and retail businesses, with potential for "material" cost cuts, while RWE would gain a long-term renewables strategy and a stable dividend from E.ON.

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