19 Feb 2011

Huge drop in Genesis profit

8:00 am on 19 February 2011

Genesis Energy says its half-year profit plunged, in part because of lower wholesale electricity margins and higher interest costs.

The publicly-owned electricity generator and retailer made $17 million in the six months to December, compared with $64.5 million in the same period a year ago.

Charges from its one-third stake in the Kupe gasfield also affected the result.

Revenue declined by 1% to $949 million and the number of customers fell slightly to 543,800.

The company will not pay a dividend to the Government for the June 2010 financial year because it needs the cash to buy the Tekapo A and B power stations from Meridian Energy as part of the mandated asset swap.

Looking ahead, Genesis expects a full-year profit of $40 million.