Mike Cannon-Brookes’ AGL bid is REJECTED by the board – here’s why

Body blow to billionaire greenie Mike Cannon-Brookes’ bid to take over Australia’s biggest electricity generator so he could shut down their coal plants EARLY to stop climate change

  • AGL Energy rejected unsolicited  takeover bid from billionaire tech entrepreneur
  • Atlassian co-founder has put in a joint offer to buy entire AGL Energy business 
  • Mike Cannon-Brookes is a passionate advocate to renewable green energy 
  • A takeover would almost certainly result in fast-tracking a transition from coal  

Energy giant AGL has rejected a takeover bid offer from billionaire Atlassian software founder and climate change crusader Mike Cannon-Brookes.

The 42-year-old tech entrepreneur and Canadian fund manager Brookfield late last week made an unsolicited for AGL in a bid to end its reliance on coal-fired energy.

But AGL on Monday morning released a statement telling the Australian Securities Exchange it had rejected the bid for all of the company at $7.50 a share – a level higher than the $7.16 closing level of Friday.

‘On the basis of the information presented, the AGL Energy Board has determined the unsolicited proposal materially undervalues the company on a change of control basis and is not in the best interests of AGL Energy shareholders,’ it said. 

AGL Energy chairman Peter Botten said the proposal would see AGL forgo the opportunity to ‘realise future potential value’. 

Cannon-Brookes is a passionate renewable energy advocate having invested billions into a string of green projects and pledging another $500million in October for start-ups tackling climate change.

A joint-offer was reportedly made on Saturday for AGL’s entire business including its more than 4.5million retail customers and its coal, gas and renewable power generation assets.

A board meeting was then held on Sunday ahead of a public announcement on Monday morning.

Atlassian co-founder Mike Cannon-Brookes (pictured with his wife Annie) want to buy AGL 

AGL stocks are now at a two-decade low and the offer would pay a 4 per cent premium on the latest closing price of $7.16 per share.

Less than five years ago, AGL was worth $27.60 a share. 

The offer would be viewed as undervaluing the company by the board and likely wouldn’t be approved, a source told the publications. 

AGL’s fossil-fuel power stations are Australia biggest greenhouse gas producers contributing eight per cent to the nation’s total emissions.

Amid the falling share prices and growing investor demand for clean energy, AGL had already announced a 2050 target to achieve ‘net-zero’ emissions. 

The change in ownership to Brookfield and Cannon-Brookes would reportedly bring this forward to 2038 with some coal-fired plants closing earlier. 

The business had already said their Bayswater plant in NSW would close by 2033 and the Loy Yang plant in Victoria would be offline by 2045.

But this would still not meet targets set by the United Nations.

In a message on January 15 to the Assembly of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), the UN Chief called for the phasing out of coal in OECD nations by 2030 as ‘the main climate priority’.

Cannon-Brookes has already invested in the $30billion Sun Cable project (pictured) that involves 125sqm of solar panels built in the Northern Territory

Cannon-Brookes has already invested in the $30billion Sun Cable project (pictured) that involves 125sqm of solar panels built in the Northern Territory 

‘Turning this ship around will take immense willpower and ingenuity from governments and businesses alike, in every major-emitting nation’, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres said.

Cannon-Brookes was last year ranked third on The Australian Financial Review’s annual Rich List with an estimated fortune of $20.2billion, putting him behind only Perth-based mining magnates Gina Rinehart and Andrew Forrest.  

He and Forrest are already investing in the massive Sun Cable solar farm project which would see solar energy exported from the Outback to Singapore.

Brookfield, based in Toronto, is worth more then $690billion with assets in property, infrastructure and electricity, including a recent purchase of Victoria’s AusNet grid.

Green energy is becoming increasingly cheaper to produce with fossil fuel struggling to keep up on the wholesale power market, contributing to AGL’s plunging share price. 

A takeover from Brookfield and Cannon-Brookes would likely see AGL's transition from coal power plants (pictured) fast tracked

A takeover from Brookfield and Cannon-Brookes would likely see AGL’s transition from coal power plants (pictured) fast tracked 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk