Seuz bids for Tractebel control

French utilities group Suez Lyonnaise des Eaux (SLDE) has announced a euro7.6bn ($7.19bn) bid for Belgian energy group Tractebel. The move underlines the French group`s policy to take advantage of growth opportunities in the deregulating European energy sector.

SLDE has launched a public share exchange offer for the 49.7 per cent of Tractebel that it does not already own. SLDE is offering to exchange one Tractebel share for one SLDE share plus a cash payment of euro16 per share. The offer values Tractebel at euro15.3bn, close to Tractebel`s 12-month high. SLDE said in a statement that the move is largely in response to the opening of Europe`s energy markets and the convergence of electricity and gas systems.

• Tractebel has been awarded three turnkey contracts to build CHP plants in France. The orders were placed by Elyo and Cogetherm and are scheduled for completion in late 2000. Tractebel Energy Engin- eering will construct a 50 MWe cogeneration unit in Calais, a 86 MWe plant in Le Lardin Saint Lazare, and a 42 MWe plant at the Peugeot works in Sochaux.