Time’s ticking on GE Water sale

Feb. 9, 2017
GE continues to remain tight lipped over the sale of its water division but is sticking to a target completion date of mid-2017... 

LONDON, England - GE continues to remain tight lipped over the sale of its water division but is sticking to the target completion date of mid-2017.

Despite strong rumours that US investment company the Blackstone Group is in the short-running for the sale, GE has refused to be drawn into any comment.

Speaking to WWi, a spokesperson said: “GE is actively engaged in the process to find a buyer for the Water & Process Technologies Business. Due to the confidential nature of the process, GE cannot share any specifics on the potential bidders or bid timeline. GE is targeting to complete the sale by mid-2017.”

It was at the end of October 2016 when GE announced it would be selling off the Water & Process Technologies division following a proposed merger of the its Oil & Gas business with Baker Hughes (read story).

GE plans to purchase a majority stake in the oil services firm for an alleged $7.4 billon, eventually folding the company into its own oil & gas business to create a $32 billion a year portfolio.

One month later WWi reported that US global science and technology company, Danaher Corporation could be a potential buyer (read story), having previously acquired Pall.

The New York Post reported that the Blackstone Group is in the running to buy its second major division from GE for $3 billion, after teaming up with Wells Fargo in April 2015 to buy the majority of GE Capital Real Estate.

The Post also reported that privity equity firms Bain Capital and Clayton, Dubilier & Rice are bidding separately, although neither were confirmed.

GE comes with a mixed technology offering, including EDR (electrodialysis), MBR (membrane bioreactor) and ZLD (zero liquid discharge).

With the target date for the sale less than five months away, GE is inevitably engaged with bidders but will no doubt remain reluctant to speak until the sale has been finalised.


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