GIC consortium said among bidders for stakes in Philippine power plants

The GIC corporate logo is seen during the GIC Staff Conference in Singapore.
The GIC corporate logo is seen during the GIC Staff Conference in Singapore.PHOTO: BLOOMBERG

KUALA LUMPUR/SINGAPORE (BLOOMBERG) - A group including Singapore's sovereign wealth fund GIC is among suitors that have submitted bids for Sithe Global Power's stakes in two Philippine power plants, people with knowledge of the matter said.

The consortium, including an infrastructure investment fund managed by Macquarie Group and Malaysian power company Malakoff Corp, submitted a non-binding offer for the stakes, the people said. The Blackstone Group-owned company's sale could fetch more than US$1 billion, they said, asking not to be identified as the process is private.

Thailand's Ratchaburi Electricity Generating Holding, the Philippines' Aboitiz Power Corp and Japan's Marubeni Corp also placed bids, the people said.

New York-based Sithe is selling a more than 60 per cent holding in Mariveles power plant, a 600-megawatt facility, and a roughly 40 per cent stake in Dinginin power station, a 1,300- megawatt facility that's being built, the people said. Both are located in the Bataan province, west of the Philippine capital of Manila.

Rising demand for electricity in the Asia-Pacific region has been spurring dealmaking. Announced mergers and acquisitions involving firms in the region's power and utilities industries totaled US$170 billion last year, up from US$133 billion in 2014, according to Bloomberg-compiled data. China General Nuclear Power Corp agreed in November to buy control of Edra Global Energy Bhd from 1Malaysia Development Bhd. for about US$2.3 billion, the data show.

Representatives for Sithe and Malakoff didn't immediately respond to e-mailed requests for comment. Aboitiz Power President Tony Moraza declined to comment, as did representatives for GIC, Marubeni and Blackstone.

The Mariveles and Dinginin power stations are co-owned by the Philippines-based Ayala Corp. and Sithe Global. Ayala in 2012 acquired a 17.1 per cent stake in Mariveles for US$155 million.

GIC has been active in Southeast Asia this year. The fund agreed to buy a stake in Indonesian retailer PT Trans Retail in February for US$386 million and agreed to partner with Century Pacific Group in March to buy International Family Food Services, owner and operator of Shakey's pizza chain in the Philippines, for an undisclosed amount.