Annual performance for 2013: Normal good year for E-CO Energi

04.03.14

Press release 02/14

2013 was yet another good year of operations for E-CO Energi, as both operating revenues and earnings before tax were on a par with 2012. Successful hedging, good production planning and operations that maintained high power plant availability contributed to E-CO Energi's strong performance. The Group's reservoirs were at normal levels early in the year and, despite dry, cold late winter months, the spring brought abundant precipitation and the rest of the year was normal. Production ended at 10.0 TWh, compared with 10.8 TWh in 2012. Two new power plants, Embretsfoss 4 and Rendalen 2, were commissioned in 2013. The Board of Directors proposes a dividend of MNOK 750 for 2013.

Good production planning and successful hedging helped ensure that E-CO Energi obtained an average selling price that was 12 per cent higher than the weighted hourly spot price for Oslo (NO1), compared with 36 per cent in 2012, when spot prices were considerably lower. The average actual selling price for 2013 was 0.323 NOK per kWh compared with 0.303 NOK per kWh in 2012. Thus the selling price was 0.02 NOK higher year-on-year.

"Overall, we are very pleased with our performance in 2013. However, all indications point in the direction of higher production and little change in the demand for power in future, which will translate into declining prices in the years ahead. This could lead to lower results in future", reports President and CEO Tore Olaf Rimmereid.

The average area price for power for Oslo (NO1) was 0.292 NOK per kWh, up some 0.07 NOK per kWh from the average price in 2012. In Q4, the price areas in Norway were changed by Statnett as a result of the commissioning of the new power line between Sima and Samnanger. For E-CO Energi, parts of the Group's production were moved to NO5, an area previously characterised by energy gluts and lower prices than NO1.

"We have expressed our concern to Statnett about NO5 now having an even higher production surplus with accompanying pressure on prices, while NO1, with the country's highest power consumption, will be a deficit area with correspondingly higher area prices", explains Rimmereid.

The Group's annual production in 2013 totalled 10 045 GWh, compared with 10 779 GWh in 2012.

E-CO Energi's operating revenues came to MNOK 3 228 in 2013, down MNOK 23 from the year before. Higher prices have largely compensated for the decline in production.

Operating expenses were virtually unchanged relative to 2012, while net financial expenses declined by nearly MNOK 36 from last year. EBT (earnings before tax) came to MNOK 1 914 in 2012, up MNOK 14 from last year. Taxes totalled MNOK 1 038, compared with MNOK 990 in 2012. The effective tax rate climbed from 52 per cent in 2012 to 54 per cent in 2013.

The net profit for the year added up to MNOK 876 in 2013, compared with MNOK 910 in 2012, a decline in profits of MNOK 34.

Investments in tangible fixed assets of MNOK 343 were some MNOK 70 higher than in 2012. Both the new Rendalen 2 (E-CO Energi = 40 per cent stake) and the Embretsfoss Power Plants (E-CO Energi = 50 per cent stake) were commissioned, adding 75 GWh more to the Group's mean production.

Competitive tendering will be held in winter 2014 for the construction of the Mork Power Plant in Lærdal. The power plant is expected to produce 90 GWh per year, of which E-CO Energi's share will be about 60 GWh. The investment decision will be taken before summer and construction will begin in the latter half of 2014. The Rosten Power Plant in Sel Municipality was granted a licence very early in 2014. Rosten's estimated mean production will come to 185 GWh, of which E-CO Energi's share will be some 90 GWh.

The cash flow from operating activities added up to MNOK 1 346, compared with MNOK 895 a year earlier. Interest-bearing debt was reduced by MNOK 227. Long-term loans totalling MNOK 551 were raised from Japanese investors and in the Norwegian bond market on favourable terms. The equity ratio was 37 per cent at year end, which was on a par with year-end 2012.

For the 2013 fiscal year, E-CO Energi proposes paying a dividend of MNOK 750 to its owner, Oslo Municipality.

 

Contacts:

Tore Olaf Rimmereid

President and CEO

+47 241 16910 
+47 909 92515
Stine Rolstad Brenna CFO

+47 241 16915
+47 928 03456

Torill Berdal Vice President, HR and Communications

+47 241 16590
+47 952 24373