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Ascendant takeover wins final approval

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Takeover approved: Algonquin Power and Utilities Corp will complete its $365 million takeover of Belco’s parent company, Ascendant Group (File photograph)

The finance minister has given the green light to the takeover of Ascendant Group Ltd by a Canadian utilities firm, the final approval needed for the deal to go through.

Ascendant revealed on October 5 that it had received approval from the Regulatory Authority for the change of control of its subsidiary Belco in the takeover by Algonquin Power and Utilities Corp.

And today the company said that Curtis Dickinson, the finance minister, had given Algonquin permission to operate on the island.

Algonquin can now proceed with the $365 million takeover, which will pay stock holders $36 per share.

Peter Durhager, Ascendant’s chairman, said: “This is welcome news and could not come at a more critical time for Bermuda.

“With the RA’s approval for the change of control of Bermuda Electric Light Company Ltd and the Minister of Finance’s approval under Section 114B of the Companies Act 1981 granting permission for Algonquin to carry on business in Bermuda, we can complete the sale.

“The sale of Ascendant to Algonquin will also assist the island and our economy to recover from the devastating impacts of Covid-19.”

Ascendant and Algonquin will now proceed with closing documentation which is expected to be completed within the coming weeks.

Ascendant intends to close its share register as at the close of trading of the Bermuda Stock Exchange on November 4, 2020. Shareholders will receive communication from Ascendant regarding the date and method of final payment in due course.

The BSX announced it would delay opening of trading in Ascendant’s shares until 12 noon Bermuda time on Monday “to allow shareholders the necessary time to absorb the announcement”.

Arun Banskota, Algonquin’s chief executive officer, said: “Since announcing the agreement last year, we’ve been working closely with the Ascendant team and are extremely pleased to move to this next important stage.

“We’re excited to bring our expertise in sustainable energy solutions to the island to help move Bermuda towards a cleaner, greener energy future.”

Shareholders will be informed as the process progresses. Pertinent information will also be posted to Ascendant’s website at www.ascendant.bm, the company said.

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Published October 16, 2020 at 4:58 pm (Updated October 16, 2020 at 10:58 pm)

Ascendant takeover wins final approval

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