Investor Tykac seeks more acquisitions in the United States and Australia

Czech billionaire Pavel Tykac said in an interview that he was seeking acquisitions in the United States and Australia to continue his series of power generation, coal and mining rights deals that sought high returns in sectors shunned by others.

Tykac’s Sev.en Global Investments announced this week that it was buying land, including mineral rights, in Australia’s Queensland to complement its purchases in the country, including Delta Electricity and Salt Lake Potash in Australia.

The investor, whose net worth is estimated at $8 billion by Forbes, told Reuters he would seek similar deals in the United States, Australia and Canada, where he believes the rule of law and Policy predictability is good for business.

“The coal and fossil world is so unfundable that assets are much cheaper because they have to be equity-funded,” Tykac said in his Prague office.

“We are past critical weight, we have enough equity to be able to afford multi-billion dollar projects,” he added.

Fossil industries will be phased out, but for now they are providing strong returns, he said.

“It will probably end one day, but at the moment there are opportunities in this sector and we don’t think there is a big rush, that the plants are necessary,” he said.

Tykac grew rich through investments in the Czech Republic in the 1990s and later in the energy sector at home and abroad. His Sev.en group includes coal-fired power plants and lignite mines in the Czech Republic which he says could be closed by 2026 without government subsidies. Its sister company Sev.en GI also owns interests in Australian coal-fired power plants under Genuity Pty Ltd, and took over Blackhawk Mining in Kentucky and West Virginia. The company also owns 55,000 acres and over 600,000 acres of mineral rights with 2.2 billion tons of proven coal reserves in Wyoming, Ohio, Illinois and West Virginia.

Tykac said his group made earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) of around 2.5 billion euros ($2.75 billion) last year and expects a profit slightly lower or similar this year.

“The projects we have have very strong cash flow…so we look and when we don’t do anything for a few months, see if the inventory fills up fast enough,” he said.

($1 = 0.9084 euros)

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