Powergroup SA, the local empowerment partner of Karadeniz Holdings, majority shareholder in Karpowership SA, has failed in its bid to get a court interdict stopping the company taking back the shares held in a floating power plant.

Before the case could be heard in the Gauteng High Court (Johannesburg) last week, Karadeniz Holdings initiated a call option settlement to acquire Powergroup SA’s 49% stake in Karpowership SA.

This action by Turkish company Karadeniz Holdings largely rendered moot the request filed by Powergroup SA for an interdict.

Business Day reports that Judge Shanaaz Mia found that ‘no harm can be averted with an interdict’ as sought by Powergroup SA.

‘The harm which the applicant seeks to prevent, namely the transfer of shares, has already occurred. An interdict will not assist in restoring the shares which have been transferred. An interdict can only be called upon to restrict or bar future conduct,’ said Mia.

As previously reported, Karpowership SA was awarded three bids for a total contracted capacity of 1 220MW to be provided for 20 years via power ships moored in Coega, Richards Bay and Saldanha as part of the Risk Mitigation Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (RMIP4) in March 2021.

Since being awarded the bids, Karpowership SA has faced legal challenges and several delays in obtaining the necessary environmental approvals.

The move by Karadeniz Holdings, which owns 51% of Karpowership SA, to take back the shares and initiate talks with prospective new partners relates to the apparent failure of Powergroup SA to deliver on certain financial commitments.

Full Business Day report