French news sources report that Emmanuel Macron’s En Marche government is planning to sell a 50% stake in national gambling operator Francaise des Jeux (FDJ).
The sale forms part of Macron’s modernisation of French enterprise, where En Marche will seek to privatise a number of state-owned assets.
For a number of years, French policymakers have mooted the sale of FDJ, the national operator of lottery and licensed betting-point terminals.
As part of En Marche’s ‘France business innovation program’, Macron seeks to divest the state’s holdings in a number of public utility enterprises, which are reported to include; national airports, rail, motorway and postal services.
FDJ is reported to have been branded as a ‘non-strategic state asset’ for En Marche’s long-term business program.
The French government is reported to have appointed BNP Paribas to commission a stock market flotation, seeking to sell an initial 50% stake held by France’s state investment firm APE (Agence des participations de l’État).
The sale of FDJ, would represent one of the first initiatives undertaken by En Marche’s modernisation program, with the government seeking to sell its majority stake by the end of 2018.
The French government would still maintain a 25% equity in FDJ. However, business news sources report that the government would be prefer to sell its remaining stake to private institutions, ending France’s state relationship with gambling.