Media Release: Sale of UFF Holdings Limited completed

News
30 Sep 2020

Electricity distributors WEL Networks Limited (WEL) and Waipa Networks Limited (Waipa) today announced the completion of the sale of UFF Holdings Limited (UFFH), the holding company for Hamilton-based fibre business Ultrafast Fibre Limited, to First Sentier Investors (formerly First State Investments).

This follows the announcement on 12 May 2020 that First Sentier Investors has agreed to purchase WEL’s 85% majority shareholding and Waipa Network’s 15% shareholding in UFFH for $854 million, subject to completion adjustments, of which a consideration of $200 million payable to WEL is deferred for 18 months from completion. The $200 million deferred payment is supported by obligations enforceable against the Purchaser.

First Sentier Investors is pleased to have reached completion of the transaction for its managed funds, the Global Diversified Infrastructure Fund and the Wholesale Infrastructure Income Fund, and looks forward to supporting and growing the business.

WEL Group Chairman Rob Campbell says: “The UFF sale enables WEL Networks to strengthen the core electricity business balance sheet, allowing us to pursue new opportunities and invest in innovative energy solutions in accordance with our business strategy. The investment in fibre has both delivered valuable infrastructure to our communities and proved a very successful investment for WEL.”

WEL acknowledges the effort of all parties involved in reaching this outcome and will use the proceeds of sale to pay down debt. However, the WEL Networks $150 million subordinated bond, which matures in August 2023, will remain in place.

ENDS


For media enquiries:

Samantha McPherson, Communication Advisor, WEL Networks

samantha.mcpherson@wel.co.nz | 021 198 1093