Colombia Seeks at Least $2.4 Billion for Isagen Stake

Colombia’s government will auction its majority stake in electricity company Isagen SA (ISAGEN) to raise money for infrastructure projects, Finance Minister Mauricio Cardenas said.

Colombia in the auction to be held in one month will offer shares at 2,850 pesos each, which would value the government’s stake at 4.5 trillion pesos ($2.4 billion), Cardenas told reporters in Bogota today. The government wants to raise 5 trillion pesos or more for its 57.66% stake in the Medellin-based company, he said.

After the first auction, which will last 60 days and will be open to a restricted group of bidders including company employees, the government will hold a second round of bidding where it expects to achieve a higher price, Cardenas said. He didn’t say when the second stage will be held.

“Naturally, we hope that in the second round when we turn to the market, there’ll be competition that increases the final price above this base of 4.5 trillion pesos,” Cardenas said.

The government won’t spend any of the proceeds from the sale before August 2014, Cardenas said. Isagen shares fell 0.9 percent to 2,720 pesos in Bogota trading today.

The government isn’t considering a sale of any part of its stake in oil company Ecopetrol SA (ECOPETL), Cardenas said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Oscar Medina in Bogota at omedinacruz@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andre Soliani at asoliani@bloomberg.net

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