Iberdrola Is Said to Review Options for Spanish Nuclear Assets

(Bloomberg) -- Iberdrola SA is exploring options including a sale of its nuclear power assets in Spain as it seeks to expand into other faster-growing businesses such as renewable energy and markets including the U.S., according to people familiar with the matter.

The company is also considering a partnership or joint venture for the business with a Spanish or foreign energy firm, the people said, asking not to be identified because the deliberations are private. Iberdrola is working with financial advisers on the review, which could attract bidders such as Endesa SA, Gas Natural SDG SA and Chinese suitors, they said.

No final decision has been made and Iberdrola may decide to keep the assets, the people said. A shift toward clean energy and growing regulatory scrutiny about the ownership of nuclear assets may make valuing the business difficult and could be the main obstacle to an agreement, they said.

A representative for Iberdrola declined to comment. Endesa and Gas Natural didn’t immediately respond to emailed requests.

Iberdrola, Spain’s largest power company, has stakes in several nuclear plants in Spain, which have total installed capacity of 3,410 megawatts, according to its website.

Iberdrola said in April that its first-quarter earnings dropped 8.4 percent due to a lack of rain, which hurt hydroelectric production in its home market, and a weak British pound that cut into income from the U.K. The company is seeking to expand in countries including the U.S., which is already its second-largest market. Its U.S. unit, Avangrid Inc., last month acquired 50 percent of an offshore wind project planned near the Massachusetts coast from Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners.

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