Barclays buys Tricorona in climate push

BARCLAYS yesterday agreed to buy Swedish carbon credits trader Tricorona, cementing the bank’s position as the biggest player in the emissions market.

Barclays has offered eight Swedish kronor (70p) per share for Tricorona, representing a total consideration of around 1.13bn kronor, or £98m, and a premium of 40 per cent to the firm’s last closing price of 5.70 kronor.

The bank said the acquisition would build on the reputation of its investment banking arm Barclays Capital, led by Bob Diamond, which is already the most active trader in the carbon emissions market.

This form of pollution trading is worth almost $150bn (£102.4bn) globally.

The bid has been recommended by Tricorona’s board, while shareholders representing 20.6 per cent of the group’s shares have already entered into irrevocable undertakings to accept the offer.

Barclays expects the deal to be accretive to earnings within a year of completion.

The move comes after Tricorona earlier this year rejected an all-share takeover offer from Swedish energy and environmental firm Opcon, which valued the group at just over 1bn kronor.

Tricorona is listed in Stockholm and specialises in the sourcing, development and trading of offsets from greenhouse gas reduction projects in developing countries.

Under the Kyoto clean development mechanism pact, in which Tricorona is a major player, companies can invest in projects in emerging nations and in return get offsets, called certified emissions reductions (CERs), which can be sold for profit.

UN climate talks to extend Kyoto or agree a successor resumed this week, exposing a familiar rift between rich and poor nations that caused last December’s Copenhagen in Denmark summit to flounder.