French oil firm Total to buy Saft battery maker

French oil firm Total to buy Saft battery maker

PARIS - Agence France-Presse
French oil firm Total to buy Saft battery maker


French oil giant Total announced May 9 a 950-million-euro ($1.1-billion) friendly takeover bid for high technology battery maker Saft as it seeks to expand its electricity and renewable energy business.

The agreed bid targets all of Saft’s shares at a price of 36.50 euros per share, representing a premium of 38.3 percent compared to Friday’s closing price, the oil company said in a statement.

Total, which like other oil majors has been battling with persistently weak oil prices, said last month it would set up a new branch for gas, renewable energy and electricity.

The company already has a more than 57-percent stake in US solar panel and power station maker SunPower.

“The combination of Saft and Total will enable Saft to become the group’s spearhead in electricity storage,” chairman and chief executive Patrick Pouyanne said in a statement.

“Saft’s renowned technological know-how and unique expertise have allowed it to develop innovative and competitive solutions for its clients.     

“It will notably allow us to complement our portfolio with electricity storage solutions, a key component of the future growth of renewable energy,” he added.

The offer is due to be launched at the beginning of June and needs approval by the financial markets regulator.

Saft employs more than 4,100 staff in 19 countries and posted net profits in 2015 of 13.6 million euros.