FAQ

Consult the most asked questions o ask yours directly

Are you going to abandon your ambitions in the energy sector, which is not part of Suez’s activities ?

On the contrary, by carrying out this operation we are affirming our ambition to become the world leader in ecological transformation. To achieve this goal, we need to further strengthen our expertise in energy services. Prior to this operation, Veolia is strengthening its position in the energy sector by signing major contracts. This momentum is set to continue and will be the subject of subsequent announcements.

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Antoine Frerot

the announcement

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Veolia acquires 29.9% of Suez’s capital from Engie and confirms its intention to acquire control

read the press release

"I am very happy to lay the foundation stone in France today for a world super champion of ecological transformation. This is a wonderful opportunity for the employees, customers and shareholders of both groups, and it is a project which serves France and the planet."

Antoine Frérot, Chairman and CEO of Veolia

key dates

July 31, 2020,
the group Engie announces a strategic review of its assets and puts its stake in Suez’ capital up for sale.
August 30, 2020,
Veolia offers to acquire 29.9% of Suez from Engie, to create the French world champion of ecological transformation
Read Veolia's press release
September 30, 2020,
Veolia confirms its project to create the world leader in the ecological transformation. Taking into consideration both the French State and Engie’s concerns, Veolia hasdecided to improve all the characteristics of its offer in order to present the best possible offer for the vote of the Board of Directors of Engie today
Read Veolia's press release
ENGIE’s Board of Directors welcomes the improved offer from VEOLIA, considering that this new offer is in line with its expectations in terms of price and social guarantees. The Board also decided to request that VEOLIA extends the validity period of its new offer until 5 October 2020 in order that VEOLIA formalizes its unconditional commitment not to launch a public tender offer which wouldn’t be friendly.
Read Engie's press release
Veolia welcomes the conclusions of the Board of Directors held by Engie and confirms that it welcomes Engie's requests:
  • extension of the validity of the offer presented today to Engie until Monday October 5, 2020;
  • formalization, by that date, of the terms of its commitment not to launch a hostile takeover bid on Suez shares.
Read Veolia's press release
Engie’s Board of Directors acknowledges the extension of the validity period of VEOLIA’s offer until 5 October 2020 and welcomes this opportunity of bringing together VEOLIA and SUEZ.
Read Engie's press release
October 5, 2020,
Engie’s Board of Directors accepts VEOLIA’s offer to purchase its stake in SUEZ.
Read Engie's press release
Veolia acquires 29.9% of Suez’s capital from Engie and confirms its intention to acquire control
Read Veolia's press release

"The environmental urgency is stronger than ever, given the state of natural resources and climate change. The growing pressure of public opinion, the European Green Deal and the stimulus packages that are being announced in many countries make ecological ambition a necessity. This project will enable us to complement the solutions we provide to public and private actors in order to give them the means to sustainably reduce their environmental impact. This historic opportunity will enable us to build the French world champion in ecological transformation, while accelerating international development and strengthening the new entity's capacity for innovation. This project is part of a friendly approach, as we share the same businesses, corporate culture and values with Suez."

Antoine Frérot, Chairman and CEO of Veolia

an announcement greeted by the press

“Un mariage dont on parle depuis 10 ans et qui unirait deux entreprises dont les activités remontent au Second Empire.”

Article from August 31, 2020 by Jean-Michel Bezat

“Le mariage de ces deux poids lourds français des services aux collectivités locales donnera naissance à un champion mondial dans la gestion de l’eau, des déchets et de l’énergie.”

Article from August 30, 2020 by David Barroux

“La logique stratégique d’une union entre Véolia et Suez est très forte et créerait un leader mondial incontesté des services environnementaux à un moment où la transformation écologiques s’accélère.”

From the Reuters report of August 30, 2020

“By combining the very solid skills of Suez and Veolia, this transaction would be able to significantly accelerate the development of the new entity in the face of growing comptetition, and would enable the industry inf France, Europe and the world to meet the environmental challenges of the 21st century.”

From the Reuters report of August 30, 2020

An offer favourably received by the stock exchange

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Antoine Frerot

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the project

An industrial company, unique in its field

Maximizing our impact for the planet, our employees and customers

The project we are putting together, with our proposal to build an industrial company with Suez that is unique in its field, is a natural next step in our strategic program Impact 2023.By pooling our resources, we will bring together, within the same company, all the solutions necessary for our customers to successfully complete their ecological transformation,we will have the benefit of the perfectly complementary nature of our respective geographical footprints, and we will combine our research and innovation investments rather than duplicating them. To sum up, we will ensure that the positive impact we have for allour stakeholders is maximized and we will build the Group of tomorrow for the world of tomorrow.

Antoine Frérot, Chairman and CEO of Veolia

The project to build with Suez the world champion of ecological transformation is based on a collective ambition: maximizing our positive impact for the planet, for the employees of our two groups and for all our customers.

PRESERVED COMPETITION

Creating the world champion of ecological transformation while respecting all competition rules

Prior to this transaction, Veolia has already identified the limited antitrust issues that such a transaction would entail, and has anticipated remedies.

For the businesses to be divested, Veolia has defined four criteria for the selection of purchasers, which are of decreasing importance.

  1. social guarantees: maintenance of employment, working conditions and social benefits linked to seniority, in particular
  2. the quality of the industrial project: in particular the capacity for investment and innovation
  3. the acceptability by the customers and the capacity of the buyer to develop a real and serious competition
  4. the price

A committee made of employees from Veolia and Suez as well as employee representatives will be responsible for guaranteeing these commitments.

Concerning the water activities of Suez France

“Tomorrow Veolia and Suez, that would be, above all, a great human adventure.”

Jean-Marie Lambert, EVP Human Resources of the Veolia Group

Veolia has identified an acquirer for Suez’s French water activities, Meridiam, a French infrastructure management company, capable of preserving competition and employment. Meridiam has made a formal commitment to this acquisition.

All of Suez's French water activities, as well as the engineering and R&D teams related to this division, would be acquired by this long-term French buyer. Meridiam, a benefit corporation, is a world leader in investment and infrastructure management for public services that would provide Suez Eau France with access to the financial resources it needs to realize its growth potential and industrial ambition.

Why we chose Meridiam as a buyer

Meridiam is committed not only to preserving employment, but also to developing it and hiring 1,000 apprentices.

“Not only do I guarantee it, but I think we will develop it.”.

Thierry Déau, article of Ouest France, by Patrice MOYON september 12th, 2020

“We are a company with a mission around the climate, biodiversity and clean energy.”.

Thierry Déau, article of Parisien, by Sébastien Lernould , september 5th, 2020

“We are going to put all the resources into Suez Eau France to be a credible competitor to Veolia. If we are allied with Antoine Frérot to come up with a solution today in the takeover of Suez, once everything is signed, we will be the best enemies in the French water market.”.

Thierry Déau, article of le Monde, by Jean-Michel Bezat, september 7th, 2020

SOCIAL GUARANTEES

Building a human adventure with all employees

A MESSAGE TO ALL VEOLIA AND SUEZ EMPLOYEES

“We would like to welcome all the Suez teams, all the employees, the management and even the top management. We won't be too many for the big project we're planning.

Antoine Frérot, Chairman and CEO of Veolia
Let's join forces to take up the challenge of this century!

Veolia's commitments on employment as well as on the integration of the teams coming from Suez are strong, clear and unequivocal.

osis

We proved it in August when Suez sold us Osis, a company with nearly 3,000 employees, i.e. about 20% of the employees in Suez's water business in France.

"A few days ago, the Osis trade unions announced that Veolia's proposals correspond to their demands for the preservation of jobs and acquired benefits. When Bertrans Camus sold us Osis, he knew that there would be no social problems, which the unions have since confirmed.”

Antoine Frérot, Chairman and CEO of Veolia

A strong social culture within the Group

At Veolia, social dialogue is at the heart of the company's performance. This culture of innovative and respectful employee relations has enabled the company to grow and transform itself in depth since 2013.

Employment in the ecological transformation sector is set to grow significantly

We need every talent, every strength to meet the challenge of the ecological transition!

"In this time of ecological emergency, we need to add up our forces rather than scatter them ”

Antoine Frérot, Chairman and CEO of Veolia

Concerning the teams mobilized on the field

Operational services jobs such as garbage men who collect waste simply don’t relocate. You don’t collect garbage in Montélimar with people from Bordeaux. 

Concerning management

"The fear of job losses can only legitimately concern the structural staff, and therefore essentially the head office, but here again I want to dispel it. The Suez headquarters has about 750 people. Some of them, between 100 and 200, will join Meridiam. The remaining employees correspond on the one hand to positions that we absolutely need (researchers, engineers, lawyers...) and on the other hand for the others, in the absence of strictly identical positions, we will make sure to build them a professional career path”

Antoine Frérot, Chairman and CEO of Veolia

"Let's be clear, finding an interesting position for 300 people in a group of 250,000 employees won't be a problem.”

Antoine Frérot, Chairman and CEO of Veolia

SYNERGIES

Pooling expertise, values and technologies

Veolia and Suez have forged groups with similar know-how, the same passion for the job and common values, first and foremost among which are respect for the customer and customer service.

We want this merger to be mutually enriching for all our employees.

Antoine Frerot

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Our ambition

The intention to bring Veolia and Suez together is perfectly in line with our Purpose andour Impact 2023 program: it opens up the possibility to create a worldwide player capableof meeting the challenges of ecological transformation, while maximizing our impactfor all our stakeholders. This development will also enable us to seize the huge potentialoffered by environmental markets.

BUILDING THE GROUP OF TOMORROW

TO MEET THE CHALLENGES OF ECOLOGICAL TRANSFORMATION

We are currently seeing a rapid increase in the collective awareness of environmental issues, which is forcing governments, businesses and individuals to take action. The national Covid-19 recovery plans, which prominently feature environmental protections, and the ambitious European Green Deal , form a particularly promising backdrop for our businesses. In order to respond to this basic trend in a Meaningful and committed way, it is essential for us to move forward together.

In creating the world champion of ecological transformation with Suez we would become the first company in the world to be able to offer all the solutions necessary to meet the great challenges of our time: the climate change emergency, the increasing scarcity of resources and the challenges of urbanization and digitization.

What is the European Green Deal?

The European Green Deal is a plan to make the economy of the European Union sustainable, particularly by reducing greenhouse gas emissions, promoting the circular economy and protectingbiodiversity. The deal is combined with a Just Transition Mechanism representing hundreds of billions of euros of potential investments to support ecological transition projects.

POSITIONING ONESELF ON A MARKET UNDERGOINGWHOLESALE STRUCTURAL CHANGES

Seize business opportunities related to the magnitude of environmental issues

While the global market is still fragmented, it will quickly become structured due to the commercial opportunities associated with the urgency and scope of the environmental challenges. This will certainly lead to the emergence of new foreign competitors. Together, our two companies could potentially generate revenues of €41 billion, increasing our worldwide market share from 3% to 5%.
To meet environmental challenges, it is imperative that we join forces. The combination of Veolia and Suez would create the first company in the world to offer all the solutions needed for ecological transformation.

EXTENDING OUR GEOGRAPHICAL FOOTPRINT

Strengthening the Group's international presence

Due to the complementary nature of the different geographical areas covered by Suez and Veolia, and by consolidating key areas where both groups are established, the international footprint of the new group would be extended, with a stronger position in regions of the world experiencing strong growth.

Répartition géographique du chiffre d’affaire
In billion euros in 2019

A reinforced presence in a competitive global market to carry our voice and our ambition

"The Veolia-Suez  merger is a tremendous booster that can take us into a new dimension in a global market where size is a key asset."

Christophe Maquet, Director of the Africa-Middle East zone of the Veolia Group

In the ecological transformation sector, competition is intensifying and internationalizing at high speed, including from China. 

The time has come to join forces to create a world champion in France.

CONSOLIDATING OUR EXPERTISE AND OUR OFFERS

Create an integrated offer that can be deployed on a large scale

Veolia and Suez are already close in terms of their nationality and their know-how and provide their customers with complementary solutions. United under a single brand, they will constitute an integrated offer, capable of being deployed on a large scale anywhere in the world.

There is an ecological emergency. Only half of the technological solutions that will be used in 20 years have been invented. They have yet to be generalized and, above all, the missing half has to be invented.

"Veolia & Suez coming together, for me that's really a wonderful tool, a perfect combination, in order to build THE industrial player of the ecological transformation."

Estelle Brachlianoff, Veolia COO

An integrated offer for our customers

Treatment and distribution of water, collection and recycling of waste (and particularly hazardous and toxic waste), recycling of plastics, decontamination of soil, air quality, optimization of energy consumption, etc.: together, the skills of Veolia and Suez constitute a very broad range of solutions.

They also complement each other in lucrative strategic segments: for example, being together would enable us to strengthen our capacities in terms of the recycling of certain plastics such as LDPE (low-density polyethylene), or PET (polyethylene terephthalate) in France. At a time when local authorities and industries are looking to make their activities cleaner and more efficient, the newgroup would offer these customers the many capabilities necessary for ecological transformation.

Increased deployment capacity

Veolia’s proposal is not driven by an appetite for capital links, but by the opportunity to invest to continue to forge ahead in our markets. The new group will be able to consolidate our solutions and technologies and deploy them on a massive scale, while increasing our investment capacities to respond to the most demanding requirements and also allowing our customers to benefit from increased synergies.

In this respect, the digitization of our businesses is a good example: size is a great asset not only in taking on the initial investments, but also in making the most of the data.

INCREASING OUR INNOVATIVE CAPACITIES

Offering innovative technologies, inventing tomorrow's services

“To offer employees and shareholders alike an exciting project in the world competition, you must not see small, you must see big. Not to be big, but to be strong.”

Antoine Frérot, Chairman and CEO of Veolia

Offering innovative technologies and inventing the services of the future: innovation provides major competitive leverage but also requires a company to invest, to maintain its collective intelligence and to share best practices.

Technologies and solutions that do not yet exist must be invented and perfected if we are to ensure that ecological transformation is a complete success, and if we are to do that, we can never have too much talent, skills or resources for Research & Innovation. Bringing the two companies together will give us a head start in the sectors of the future, as is already the case, at Veolia, in terms of air quality and the reuse of wastewater, among other areas. These are complex problems where it is important for us to combine both our financial and intellectual capital to multiply the impact of our investments, shorten the “time-to-market” and recoup those investments sooner. Bringing the two companies together will also enable us to extend the virtuous circle that already powers innovation at Veolia, through worldwide sharing of best practices on the ground, so that it can be duplicated or adapted to local conditions.

“Together we would be considerably stronger. Adding the capacities of Veolia and Suez on a continental scale means being able to offer our customers an improved reliability and competitiveness.

Jean-François Nogrette, SVP Veolia Technologies & Contracting

"There is no planet B, that's why we are taking action, trying to bring together all talents, to act while it is still time."

Olivier Brousse, EVP Strategy & Innovation

Creating a European College of Ecological Transformation

The offer includes the setting up of an unprecedented professional training center capable of providing the teaching necessary for the jobs of tomorrow while contributing to our intellectual andindustrial standing.

Building on Veolia Campus’ long history of environmental training, this “EuropeanCollege of Ecological Transformation” will be based in France and could produce some 500 graduate students every year, promoting access to employment for unqualified young people, in particular.

COMBINING OUR CONVERGENT STRENGTHS

Building a development and acceleration project

The cultures, values, businesses and know-how of our two companies, and the ambitions of their ongoing strategic plans, make them more compatible than ever and ideally suited for a successful integration.

Committed and enthusiastic employees

Veolia and Suez both have long industrial histories that have forged groups with similar know-how, the same passion for the job and common values, first and foremost among which are respect for the customer and customer service.
The synergies that we will find will not be merely operational, we also want them to be mutually enriching for all our employees.

This is a development and acceleration project. From the outset, we will all have a valuable role to play in responding to the challenges and everyone will have their place in the new group, including at the level of top management. Eventually, it will even create new jobs and new businesses.

Aligned strategies

Impact 2023 in the case of Veolia, Shaping 2030 for Suez; the two groups’ missions and strategic plans are convergent and focus equally on international markets with strong growth and innovation potential.

Collaborateurs à fin 2019

A MULTIFACETED PERFORMANCE

CREATING VALUE FOR ALL OUR STAKEHOLDERS

In line with our strategic program Impact 2023, and our multifaceted performance commitments, bringing Veolia and Suez together aims to create not only economic and financial value, but also commercial, social, societal and environmental value. Thus, it will benefit all our stakeholders, both internal and external.

For employees

The new group, which will be larger, more innovative and more international, will offer exciting prospects and opportunities for all the talented people at Veolia and Suez who currently makethe reputation of the two entities. We undertake that the transaction will not have any negative impact on employment in France.

For society

The activities of our two companies, which are central to the concerns of both public and privatecustomers, are highly labor-intensive and provide essential services to the community. Theacceleration of our development will therefore have a positive impact on the regions where weare established.

For the planet

Bringing Veolia and Suez together will enable us to develop all the possible solutions to deal withpollution of any kind, including the most difficult, and to confront the increasing scarcity of raw materials.

For the clients

Both local authority and industrial customers will find the new entity to be a partner that can helpthem achieve their specific ecological transformation objectives even more quickly.

For shareholders

This transaction will create value for Veolia’s shareholders as early as the first year, in particular through operational and purchasing synergies estimated at €500 million, which have been taken into account in the price offered to Engie.

Antoine Frerot

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in a few words

The intention to bring Veolia and Suez together is perfectly in line with our Purpose andour Impact 2023 program: it opens up the possibility to create a worldwide player capableof meeting the challenges of ecological transformation, while maximizing our impactfor all our stakeholders. This development will also enable us to seize the huge potentialoffered by environmental markets.

Veolia + Suez, our employees talk about it best!

Project to bring Veolia and Suez together
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