Denmark

Denmark

Increased output and divestments boost Dong earnings

DENMARK: Dong Energy has reported an operating profit of DKK 4.4 billion (€591 million) in the second quarter of the year, an increase of 70%, and indicated a shift in divestment strategy.

Dong Energy said increased output, due to greater capacity, helped to boost earnings (pic: MHI Vestas)
Dong Energy said increased output, due to greater capacity, helped to boost earnings (pic: MHI Vestas)

The offshore wind developer said overall profit from the period grew three-fold from DKK 1.15 billion (€155 million) to DKK 4.99 billion (€671 million).

Dong's higher earnings were the result of high-energy content from new and existing projects, as well as the sale of part of the 573MW Race Bank offshore project in the UK to investment firm Macquarie, which was completed in the quarter.

Earlier this week, Dong announced an agreement with Global Infrastructure Partners to sell a 50% share of the Borkum Riffgrund 2 offshore project in Germany. The deal enabled Dong to increase its earnings forecast for the year from €15-17 billion to €17-19 billion.

For a number of years, Dong's strategy has been to sell-off up to 50% of its wind projects in a bid to help create capital for future projects. However, CEO Henrik Poulsen indicated the firm might soon shift its approach.

"After the farm down of Borkum Riffgrund 2 and the expected farm downs of Walney Extension and Hornsea 1, we will only consider farm downs subject to substantial value creation and risk diversification," Poulsen said.

In the quarter, Dong saw the ramp up of new projects, including Race Bank, as well as the 258MW Burbo Bank Extension in the UK and the 582MW Gode Wind 1 and 2 projects in Germany, which were not online yet in Q2 2016.

"Our expectations for partnership income in H2 2017 have increased, as we have entered into an agreement to divest of 50% of Borkum Riffgrund 2 in 2017 instead of 2018," Poulsen said.

He gave an update on the UK's next contract for difference (CfD) auction. Poulsen said the company expects to submit a bid for the 1.8GW Hornsea 2 offshore project and a result is due in September.

The company is also set to bid in the next auction in Massachusetts, US, at the end of the year.

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