Baker Hughes, a GE company ( BHGE ), said that its board has authorized the repurchase of as much as $3 billion of its common units from BHGE and General Electric.
The company will use the proceeds from the sale of its BHGE LLC common units to repurchase its Class A shares. In addition, the company also announced its intention for BHGE LLC to issue new debt.
“Today’s announcement represents an important step in our plan to optimize BHGE’s capital structure. We believe the buyback is an attractive use of cash given the value of our franchise and the highly accretive nature of this program,” said Lorenzo Simonelli, BHGE Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.
“At the current share price, this repurchase represents approximately eight percent of the company’s outstanding shares. We are pleased that BHGE’s strong balance sheet enables us to not only return value to shareholders through our regular quarterly dividend and share repurchases, but also invest in opportunities that will strengthen our fullstream portfolio and drive long-term growth.”
BHGE and BHGE LLC have also entered into an agreement with GE whereby BHGE LLC will repurchase its common units from GE on a pro rata basis and on the same terms as it repurchases common units from BHGE.
The proceeds distributed to BHGE will be used to repurchase Class A shares on the open market or in privately negotiated transactions. The repurchases will not materially change BHGE and GE’s relative economic interests in BHGE LLC or BHGE’s Class A and Class B stockholders’ relative voting interest.