German power firm Innogy boosted by latest utility shake-up

An exterior view of the headquarters of innogy a subsidiary of German energy company RWE in Essen Germany 6 March 2018

RWE, which owns 76.8 percent of Innogy, saw its shares gain as much as 14 percent and E.ON was up 6 percent.

German energy company RWE has reached a preliminary agreement on the sale of its controlling stake in Innogy to German utility E.On, RWE announced on Sunday.

The transactions, which still require approval from the company's boards, face scrutiny by European Union regulators as well as from Germany's Federal Cartel Office, which did not respond to an emailed request for comment.

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"After successful implementation of the transaction it is meant to fully integrate innogy into the E.ON Group", E.ON said in a statement. 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. "Through this transaction E.ON would become a focused customer-oriented energy company concentrating on energy networks and customer solutions".

Germany's biggest power producer RWE spun-off innogy in 2016, but still holds a majority stake in the company focusing on renewables, retail, power distribution and other new energy areas like electric mobility. "Now they have agreed on a spectacular deal that will shake up the European energy market". Under the deal, announced in November and still subject to CMA approval, Innogy was to retain a minority stake of 34.4% in the business. Uwe Tigges, chief executive officer at innogy, said it would be commenting on announcements from RWE and E.On "in due course". Meanwhile, in a shocking development chief financial officer Bernhard Günther was reportedly subject of an acid attack by unknown assailants that has left him severely injured and now receiving treatment in hospital.

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