GDF Suez v Teesside Power Holdings& Ors

GDF Suez International Holdings BV and GdF International SAS v Teesside Power Holdings, Western Power Investments, South Wales TPL Investments, Cargill Financial Markets, ELQ Investors

May, 50 days, TCC

For the claimants GDF Suez International Holdings BV:

Atkin Chambers’ Martin Bowdrey QC leading 3 Verulam Buildings’ Jonathan Devies Jones and Atkin Chambers’ Serena Cheng, instructed by Eversheds partners Gary Pellow and Simon Brooks

For the defendants Teesside Power Holdings, Western Power Investments, South Wales TPL Investments, Cargill Financial Markets, ELQ Investors:

Brick Court’s Mark Howard QC leading Alec Haydon of the same set instructed by Ashurst partner Ben Tidswell

Mark Howard QC
Mark Howard QC

This £100m battle will dominate the Technology and Construction Court (TCC) in 2013, with a 10-week outing starting in May.

The claimants, GDF Suez and GdF International, say they are owed more than £100m for breach of warranties in relation to the sale of a UK power station in 2008.

The claimants had in plan a £500m upgrade of the power station after its purchase, but by 2010 work had not started. Ownership of the station was then passed to International Power after its merger with GDF in 2010.

Prior to that, output at the plant had slowed almost to a halt.

The case concerns warranties said to be essential to the operation of the station and gas pipeline serving it. The claim includes damages for the inability to make a business interruption insurance claim for failure of a steam turbine at the power station.

This is a complex case that will pitch Brick Court heavyweight Mark Howard QC, for the defendants, against Atkin Chambers’ Martin Bowdrey QC, who is instructed for the claimants.