May 15, 2017 / 6:34 AM / 2 months ago

Italy's Atlantia launches 16.3 bln euro bid on Spain's Abertis

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MILAN, May 15 (Reuters) - Italian infrastructure group Atlantia has launched a cash-and-share offer on Abertis on Monday, in a deal that values the Spanish rival at 16.34 billion euros ($18 billion).

The transaction would create the world's biggest company in the sector with 14,095 km of toll roads under management, Atlantia said in a statement.

Atlantia said it would offer 16.50 euros per Abertis share, or shareholders in the Spanish group can choose to be paid in stock on the basis of a swap ratio of 0.697 Atlantia shares for each Abertis one.

"We believe we achieved the goal" to make the offer friendly and attractive for all shareholders and the management of the two groups, Atlantia CEO Giovanni Castellucci said. (Reporting by Francesca Landini, editing by Agnieszka Flak)

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