William Malcolm

CEZ Reports Strong Performance In The First Three Quarters

CEZ Energy Group reported the same net profit for the first three quarters of this year as the same period last year, CZK 13.6 billion. Revenues rose by about five percent year on year to 155.5 billion crowns, the company announced today.

The company stated that its results were positively affected by, among other things, the higher price it secured for the electricity produced on the wholesale market and the stable operation of nuclear power plants. Sales of electricity, gas, and heat, on the other hand, fell year on year.

Today, analysts said that they positively perceive the improvement in the outlook for CEZ’s full-year results, which the company presented today. The company stated that it specifies the planned annual operating EBITDA from the current 62 to 64 billion crowns to 64 billion crowns. For the adjusted net profit, from which the dividend is paid, the company then adjusted the full-year outlook from CZK 21 to 23 billion to CZK 23 billion. According to the company, the current estimate of the negative impact of the covid-19 pandemic on the year-round operations is approximately CZK 3 billion.

The company’s net profit adjusted for extraordinary non-cash effects increased by 27 percent year-on-year to CZK 18.7 billion in three quarters. Operating profit before depreciation (EBITDA) then increased in the first nine months of the year by 14 percent compared to last year to 50.9 billion crowns. Last year, CEZ’s net profit adjusted for extraordinary items amounted to CZK 18.9 billion, and EBITDA was CZK 60.2 billion. From last year’s profit, ČEZ paid a dividend of CZK 34 per share before tax to shareholders this year. The dividend from this year’s profit will be higher year-on-year, analysts say.

In the second half of October, ČEZ stated that it sold most of its Romanian assets to the London company Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets (MIRA). The companies have signed a contract; the transaction’s settlement is still subject to approval by the authorities. The sale is in line with ČEZ’s new strategy, approved last June. It envisages the gradual sale of assets in Bulgaria, Romania, Turkey, and Poland.

Fourteen potential investors showed interest in CEZ’s Polish assets. According to him, the deadline for submitting non-binding offers is 7 December. The entire sale should be completed by the end of next year. In mid-September, ČEZ announced that it had started looking for candidates for its five Polish companies. Among them are the Skawina and Chorzów coal-fired power plants, which are also heating plants. CEZ will keep companies doing business in modern energy services (ESCO) in Poland and develop them at home and abroad.

Today, ČEZ also commented on the planned construction of a new unit at the Dukovany Nuclear Power Plant. The company’s spokesman Ladislav Kříž stated that the second round of negotiations with those interested in the construction of this unit took place at the turn of September and October. According to him, five companies were specifically negotiated – the Chinese CGN, the French EdF, the South Korean KHNP, the Russian Rosatom, and the North American Westinghouse. Kříž stated that it is still true that ČEZ wants to announce a tender by the end of this year.