Winter weather hits profits at Britain's Centrica

Thursday 31 July 2014 07.48
Centrica recently completed its acquisition of Bord Gáis
Centrica recently completed its acquisition of Bord Gáis

British utility Centrica saw operating profit fall 35% in the first half of the year as a mild winter in Britain led to reduced energy demand and extreme weather in North America increased costs.

Centrica made £1.032bn in operating profit, down from £1.583bn a year earlier, it said today.

Revenues increased by 15% to £15.7bn.

The company was hit by £65m of costs relating to the polar vortex cold snap that hit North America earlier this year. It also posted write-offs of £40m relating to cancelled wind farm projects.

The company also entered the Irish market during the period through its €1.1bn acquisition of Bord Gáis.

Centrica said integrating this business into its wider operations was a priority for the second half of the year. 

It said it expected Bord Gáis to generate €40m in earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation during 2015.

"The first half of the year has seen challenging market conditions across the Group, both as a result of the weather and reflecting the wider political environment," said Centrica chairman Rick Haythornwaite in a results statement.