Italy's Snam can cut stake in Italgas through exchangeable bonds

Italian gas group Snam logo is seen outside their office in Rome
Italian gas group Snam logo is seen outside their office in Rome, Italy, June 4, 2020. REUTERS/Guglielmo Mangiapane

MILAN, March 22 (Reuters) - Italy's Snam (SRG.MI) and state lender Cassa Depositi e Prestiti (CDP) tweaked their shareholders' pact over gas distributor Italgas (IG.MI), introducing the option for Snam to cut its stake by issuing exchangeable bonds, a document showed.

Italy's gas grid operator Snam currently owns 13.5% of Italgas with CDP holding 26%.

Snam recently denied media speculation saying it was ready to sell its Italgas' shareholding by the end of March and could issue an exchangeable bond to do so.

The new pact between Italian gas grid operator Snam and CDP, which was published on Wednesday, shows that Snam can sell up to 6.75% of Italgas but only if the transaction is linked to the reimbursement of one or more exchangeable bonds.

In this scenario, CDP does not have the right of first refusal and the potential buyers do not have to enter into the shareholders' pact.

If Snam decides to shed its stake in Italgas through a normal sale it must divest the entire 13.5% shareholding and CDP has a right of first refusal, the document showed.

Reporting by Giancluca Semeraro and Francesca Landini; writing by Francesca Landini Editing by Keith Weir

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