PARIS, July 3 The deal under which the French
government will acquire up to 20 percent of Alstom
from the engineering company's top shareholder Bouygues
amounts to concerted action, French market regulator
AMF said on Thursday, a decision that could make it more costly
for the state to acquire the holding.
The roughly 2 billion euro ($2.7 billion) acquisition by the
French state is part of a multi-party agreement under which U.S.
company General Electric will acquire some of Alstom's
power turbine assets.
Under a so-called "concert party" arrangement, two
shareholders can be seen as acting as one. Bouygues holds 29.3
percent of Alstom - close to the 30 percent at which a
shareholder is obliged to make a full offer for the whole
During the period in which it plans to acquire the stake,
the government had hoped to possibly also acquire some stock on
the market at a lower price than that agreed with Bouygues.
In an interview on French radio just ahead of the AMF
decision, David Azema, the head of French state holding company
APE, said such a decision would not prevent the state from
acquiring the 20 percent.
He said it would simply mean that the government would be
able to buy "little or nothing" on the market.
($1 = 0.7331 Euros)
(Reporting by Jean Michel-Belot and Andrew Callus; Editing by