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A big Finnish energy company, Fortum made an offer to German energy company E.ON of its 100% owned company, Uniper. Fortum has a lots of cash in their pocket which are waiting for good investment targets. The first obvious question is that is Uniper the one? Fortum is investing heavily to the green energy and the big part of Uniper’s production is based on coal. The political risk there is the Russian gas which they are committed.

But if we forget those standard M&A issues and start to look at the behaviour of the management of Uniper. Then the story starts to be interesting. Before the offer documents were public, Uniper especially its CEO Klaus Schäfer announced that this is a hostile takeover, company (Uniper) is lousy etc. and they started a big campaign against Fortum. So he is spending owners money to the campaign, for example newspaper ads. Why owner lets this happen? CEO is saying that he thinks about the stakeholders (owners, employers, etc.) interests. I say bollocks (pardon my French).

Now I hear a quiet buzz is my ears. I used to work in a Finnish company which had operations around the world. When you were in the situation that you had to lay off people due to the production and financial reasons Germany was the most expensive place to do so. This makes me wonder what kind of golden handshake is in the contract for the CEO? My guess is that if he will be laid off, he is ready to enjoy big money in sunny place as a retired person. He saw a possibility. Trust me, after this no reasonable CEO post is reachable for him. E.ON leaves the mess to Fortum to clean. Own pocket is always the closest one

In Finland we have an old wisdom “Whose bread you are eating, his songs you are singing!” Maybe it should be translated to Germany.
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