Bloomberg News

Rivero Resigns From Sacyr After Starting Battle With Repsol

October 20, 2011

Oct. 20 (Bloomberg) -- Sacyr Vallehermoso SA Chairman Luis Del Rivero resigned after he led the construction company into a battle with Repsol YPF SA, its biggest investment.

Del Rivero, 62, will be replaced by Chief Executive Officer Manuel Manrique, the company said in a regulatory filing after a board meeting in Madrid today. Demetrio Carceller, Sacyr’s biggest shareholder, and Juan Abello will be vice chairmen.

The Sacyr board turned against Del Rivero after he forged an alliance with Petroleos Mexicanos to try and wring more dividend payments out of Repsol as the builder battled to shore up its finances.

Del Rivero’s resignation is likely to mean that partnership will be dissolved and Manrique will look to sell part of Sacyr’s Repsol stake to ease the refinancing of a 4.9 billion-euro ($6.7 billion) loan that comes due in December, according to Bernaldo de Quiros, a former adviser to the Spanish government who was in contact with board members during today’s meeting.

Repsol spokesman Kristian Rix declined to comment.

Shareholders including Novacaixagalicia, the Spanish savings bank that owns 8.75 percent of Sacyr, urged Del Rivero to back down from the confrontation, arguing a withdrawal would increase his chances of boosting dividend income.

The Aug. 29 agreement with Pemex aimed to boost earnings, raise Repsol’s share price, and to install a chief executive officer to dilute the power of Chairman Antonio Brufau, who is also CEO.

Del Rivero had been calling on Brufau to raise the Repsol dividend since a series of press interviews in December 2009. He also urged the Repsol chairman to sell assets including a 30 percent stake in a Brazilian refinery and in the company’s oil discoveries in the country in an interview in El Mundo in which he also declined to endorse Brufau’s leadership.

--Editors: Alex Devine, Will Kennedy

To contact the reporter on this story: Ben Sills in Madrid at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Reed Landberg at

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