Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 

FIRST CUT: Contact 1H net profit jumps on asset sales

FIRST CUT: Contact 1H net profit jumps on asset sales, increases FY div guidance


By Gavin Evans

Feb. 11 (BusinessDesk) - Contact Energy, the country’s second-largest electricity retailer, increased first-half profit five-fold on the sale of its Ahuroa gas storage and LPG business last year.

Net profit rose to $276 million for the six months ended Dec. 31, from $58 million a year earlier, boosted by a $172 million gain from the asset sales.

Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, amortisation and changes in financial instruments from Contact’s remaining businesses rose to $278 million, from $217 million a year earlier.

The company, which has simplified its business to improve its retail and generation margins, generated 4,532 GWh of electricity in the six months, almost 5 percent more than a year earlier.

A 25 percent jump in hydro output from its Clyde and Roxburgh dams enabled the firm to benefit from record wholesale prices in October and November when gas supplies were tight and storage was low in the Waitaki hydro catchment of rival Meridian Energy. That saw generation ebitdaf increase by $58 million to $243 million.

“In addition, as gas supply reduced, Contact supported the market by accessing gas stored in AGS and offering additional thermal generation above our contracted sales to meet wholesale spot demand,” chief executive Dennis Barnes said.

Customer ebitdaf increased by $3 million to $48 million.

Wellington-based Contact is working hard to maximise the value of its activities as new retailers chip away at the customer bases of the major players.

It sold its Ahuroa gas storage facility and its Rockgas LPG distribution business to free up capital, simplify its operations and reduce its retail exposure to international LPG prices.

It has reduced its operating and stay-in-business capital costs by almost $50 million during the past two years and is aiming for a further $18 million reduction in the current year.

Today, Contact said its spending on stay-in-business capital fell by $6 million in the latest period, while other operating costs were down by $4 million.

The company said its confidence in its renewable asset base and the strength of its balance sheet has allowed it to change its distribution policy to 100 percent of operating free cash flow.

It now expects to pay a full-year dividend of 39 cents per share, up from 32 cents a year earlier. It will pay a 16 cent interim dividend on April 9, up from 13 cents a year earlier.

Contact shares ended last week at $6.22 and have gained about 16 percent in the last 12 months.

(BusinessDesk)

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Science Media Centre: Funding For R&D In New Zealand – Expert Reaction

Research, Science and Innovation Minister Dr Megan Woods has today announced $401.3 million funding for research and development through Budget 2020 and the COVID Response and Recovery Fund. The fund includes $150 million for an R&D loan scheme, ... More>>

ALSO:

Maritime NZ: NZ Joins Global Initiative Keeping Ports Open And Freight Moving

New Zealand has joined an international port authorities’ global initiative for safe and efficient movement of goods and shipping during the COVID-19 crisis. World-wide, 56 port authorities have agreed how they will work together facilitating maritime ... More>>

ALSO:

National: National Backs Businesses With $10k JobStart

National will provide a $10,000 cash payment to businesses that hire additional staff as part of our commitment to keeping New Zealanders in jobs, National Party Leader Todd Muller and Finance spokesperson Paul Goldsmith have announced. Our JobStart ... More>>

ALSO:

DIY Law: Government Exempts Some Home Improvements From Costly Consents

Homeowners, builders and DIYers will soon have an easier time making basic home improvements as the Government scraps the need for consents for low-risk building work such as sleep-outs, sheds and carports – allowing the construction sector ... More>>

ALSO:

Media Awards: The New Zealand Herald Named Newspaper Of The Year, Website Of The Year At Voyager Media Awards

The New Zealand Herald has been labelled a “powerhouse news operation” as it claims the two biggest prizes – Newspaper of the Year and Website of the Year – along with many individual awards at the 2020 Voyager Media Awards Website of the ... More>>

ALSO:

ASB Bank: ASB Takes The Lead Again With New Low Home Loan Interest Rate

ASB has moved again to support its customers, cutting a number of home loan rates, including the two-year special rate to a new low of 2.69% p.a. Craig Sims, ASB executive general manager Retail Banking says the reduced rate will be welcome news for many ... More>>

ALSO:

Nathan Hoturoa Gray: The Problems With Testing And Case Statistics For Covid-19

To begin to understand disease transmission in a country requires adequate testing of your population with properly vetted, accurate tests. As the world struggles to find what 'adequate percentage' of the population is necessary, (estimates predict ... More>>

ALSO:

RNZ: Fletcher Building To Lay Off 1000 Staff In New Zealand

The construction company will cut around 10 percent of its workforce as it struggles with the fallout from Covid-19. More>>

ALSO:

Can Pay, Won't Pay: Cashflow Moves Urged

Government Ministers are asking significant private enterprises to adopt prompt payment practices in line with the state sector, as a way to improve cashflow for small businesses. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Why We Should Legally Protect The Right To Work From Home

For understandable reasons, the media messaging around Level Two has been all about “freedom” and “celebration”, but this is not necessarily going to be a universal experience. When it comes to workplace relations, Level Two is just as likely to ... More>>

ALSO:



New Zealand Government: Supporting Kiwi Businesses To Resolve Rent Disputes

The Government will legislate to ensure businesses that suffered as a result of the COVID-19 response will get help to resolve disputes over commercial rent issues, Justice Minister Andrew Little announced today. More>>

ALSO:


Science Media Centre: Understanding 5G Concerns – Expert Q&A


Recent attacks on cell phone towers have brought concerns over the rollout of 5G technology into sharp relief.
While scientific research has consistently shown that the technology does not adversely affect human health, public concerns about its impact have spread around the world, fueled in part by growing misinformation online. The SMC asked experts to comment... More>>

ALSO:


Trade: Record Monthly Surplus As Imports Dive

Imports in April 2020 had their biggest fall since October 2009, resulting in a monthly trade surplus of $1.3 billion, Stats NZ said today. “This is the largest monthly trade surplus on record and the annual goods trade deficit is the lowest ... More>>

ALSO:


Media Blues: Stuff Chief Executive Buys Company For $1

Stuff chief executive Sinead Boucher has purchased Stuff from its Australian owners Nine Entertainment for $1.
The chief executive was returning the company to New Zealand ownership, with the sale is expected to be completed by 31 May.
"Our plan is to transition the ownership of Stuff to give staff a direct stake in the business as shareholders," Boucher said in a statement.... More>>

ALSO:

RNZ: Bar Reopening Night 'much, Much Quieter'

Pubs and bars are reporting a sluggish first day back after the lockdown, with the fear of going out, or perhaps the joy of staying home, thought to be a reason for the low numbers. More>>

ALSO:

Stats NZ: New Zealand’s Population Passes 5 Million

New Zealand's resident population provisionally reached 5 million in March 2020, Stats NZ said today. More>>

NIWA: Seven Weeks Of Clearing The Air Provides Huge Benefits: Scientist

Seven weeks of lockdown has provided evidence of how pollution can vanish overnight with benefits for the environment and individuals, says NIWA air quality scientist Dr Ian Longley. Dr Longley has been monitoring air quality in Auckland, Wellington ... More>>

ALSO:

Government: Milestone In Cash Flow Support To SMEs

A significant package of tax reforms will be pushed through all stages in Parliament today to throw a cash flow lifeline to small businesses. More>>

ALSO: