The sales completion is conditional on approval by Shanks ordinary shareholders. However, an extraordinary general meeting will take place on June 23 and, provided approval is granted, the sale should be completed by the end of the month.
Only last month, Shanks confirmed that both the Pennon Groups Viridor Waste and Terra Firma, which owns the Waste Recycling Group, had been interested in acquiring the groups landfill assets. Shanks operates 20 landfill sites around the UK.
Shanks chairman Ian Clubb said selling these assets gave the company the financial flexibility to pursue opportunities in its continental businesses as well as integrated municipal waste contracts in the UK. The technologies assembled by the group are particularly suited to these markets and will allow it to capitalise on opportunities created by the Landfill Directive and the increasing level of Landfill Tax.
Terra Firmas Guy Hands said: The acquisition of Shanks UK landfills, in conjunction with Terra Firmas purchase of Waste Recycling Group for £531m in June 2003, reflects the teams continued interest in the UK waste industry. We are delighted to have the opportunity to expand our presence in the sector.
The combination of Shanks UK landfills with Waste Recycling Group will bring added operational and strategic focus to the business. This acquisition is good news for its employees and its customers. It also confirms our position as one of the leading producers of green energy in Europe.