SSE increases earnings outlook after help from weather

The business upgraded its earnings outlook for the year to the end of March.

August Graham
Tuesday 29 March 2022 11:41
SSE said investment had remained on track (Steve Parsons/PA)
SSE said investment had remained on track (Steve Parsons/PA)

SSE said that recent weather has helped its renewable energy production catch up a little with what was originally planned.

The business upped its earnings outlook as it said that a 19% shortfall in output from its wind and solar farms in the nine months to the end of December has reduced to a 12% shortfall over the last year.

Bosses said the business has done well in the turbulent market of recent months, which has seen energy prices spike around the world.

“SSE’s integrated and balanced business model has performed well in turbulent market conditions, with expected financial performance now broadly aligning with our internal projections at the beginning of the year,” said finance director Gregor Alexander.

Our significant investment programme will make a huge contribution towards both net zero and energy security

Gregor Alexander

The business said that it expects adjusted earnings per share to reach between 92p and 97p in the year to the end of March. Previously guidance was set to at least 90p.

Full-year expenditure is still on track to exceed £2 billion while the £1.3 billion it got from selling Scotia Gas Networks will help reduce adjusted net debt to £9 billion.

“At the same time, we have made further progress with the SGN disposal and we have a number of attractive options to support accelerated electrification of the economy,” Mr Alexander said.

“Our significant investment programme will make a huge contribution towards both net zero and energy security whilst publication of our Net Zero Transition Plan gives stakeholders more detail on how we will decarbonise our businesses.”

Shares in SSE rose 1.1%.

Separately, energy supplier Good Energy reported a nearly 12% rise in revenue in 2021, reaching £146 million thanks to rises in the wholesale costs of energy.

Gross profit dipped by 8.6%, reaching £27 million, the business said.

Chief executive Nigel Pocklington said: “In December, I called the high cost of energy a national crisis.

“This has been exacerbated by Russia’s aggression against Ukraine. Whilst renewables should play a vital role in our long-term energy strategy, only the Government can bring short-term respite.

“The response to date has been inadequate, and further support will undoubtedly be needed.”

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