Shares rise on EYATH sale news

Shares in the state-owned Thessaloniki Water Supply and Sewage Company (EYATH) jumped more than 2 percent on the Athens bourse yesterday, outperforming the broader market, after the government announced it will start searching for a strategic investor in the utility. Shares in EYATH gained 2.80 percent to 5.14 euros after Thursday’s jump of more than 8 percent. The Athens Exchange’s benchmark general index retreated 2.46 percent. On Thursday, a joint ministerial commitee announced it will appoint advisers to begin looking for a strategic investor for EYATH, in which the government holds a 74 percent stake. Speculation has regularly surfaced in local media that France’s Suez, which holds 5.01 percent of EYATH, intends to increase its position in the northern Greek company, which is valued at about 186.5 million euros. The government is likely to sell about 23 percent of EYATH to an investor in order to keep control of the company, reports added.

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