Business Irish

Sunday 20 January 2019

Operating cash flow hits €12m at energy supplier Greencoat

Greencoat Renewables generated an operating cash flow of €11.8m in 2017. Stock image
Greencoat Renewables generated an operating cash flow of €11.8m in 2017. Stock image
Ellie Donnelly

Ellie Donnelly

Renewable energy company Greencoat Renewables generated an operating cash flow of €11.8m in 2017.

The operating cash at Ireland's first stock market-listed renewable energy firm almost entirely offsets other pressures on the value of its portfolio assets, Davy analysts said.

"I am delighted with the company's achievements in its first year and very pleased to announce our maiden dividend of 2.61 cent," Ronan Murphy, chairman of Greencoat, said.

"The outlook for the company is positive. We have a high-quality operating portfolio, a capital structure aligned for growth opportunities, and a strong position in an attractive secondary market for wind assets."

Electricity generated during the year, which came in at 182.3 gigawatt hours, was 4pc below what had been budgeted for the period, however lower than expected wind speeds were to blame, according to the group's financial statement.

"We are very pleased to have achieved a significant number of key milestones in 2017," Bertrand Gautier, partner of Greencoat Capital, the investment manager, said.

The company - which in July raised €270m through its initial public offering (IPO) on the Irish Stock Exchange's Enterprise Securities Market - declared a dividend of 2.61 cent per share for the year. Going forwards the group is aiming to pay a dividend of six cent per share on a quarterly basis.

Greencoat "has put in place an aligned capital structure, is assembling a portfolio of high quality assets and has further opportunity to expand in the short term", Davy analysts, who have given the company an "outperform" rating, said.

Greencoat, which announced in December that it was to acquire Dromadda More wind farm for €88.4m, aims to build a portfolio of operating renewable electricity-generation assets, initially investing in wind-generation assets in Ireland.

In addition to the decision to buy Dromadda More, the group also announced in December that it was putting in place a €250m revolving credit facility (RCF) with a syndicate of five banks - AIB, BNP Paribas, Commerzbank, Royal Bank of Canada and Santander.

The company said at the time that the RCF would be used to refinance its existing project finance debt of €71m, as well as fund new acquisitions, including the Dromadda More wind farm.

Last month the company, which over time intends to invest in electricity-generating assets in certain countries within the eurozone, announced its intention to buy a 9.2MW wind farm in Kilkenny for €22.5m.

The site has been in operation since 2016 and comprises eight turbines. To date Greencoat has received over €70m in investment from the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund.

Irish Independent

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