Centrica on target with cost-cutting but UK electricity demand falls

(Alliance News) - British Gas-owner Centrica PLC is on track with cost-saving initiatives, but ...

Alliance News 10 May, 2021 | 8:53AM
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(Alliance News) - British Gas-owner Centrica PLC is on track with cost-saving initiatives, but trading conditions have remained tough, it said on Monday.

The energy utility said its restructuring is on track, with year-on-year operating cost savings of more than GBP100 million expected in 2021.

Less positively, the pandemic has seen electricity demand from UK business customers hit by around 15% in the first quarter, residential boiler installations were down 11%, and non-essential service visits were postponed.

"As expected, trading conditions have remained tough in the year to date. However, the modernisation of our group remains on track and the difficult, but necessary process to move colleagues onto new terms and conditions is now complete," said Chief Executive Chris O'Shea.

"Although the external environment remains uncertain, our tight focus on cash and on fixing the basics across the group leaves us well placed as we continue the turnaround of our company."

Centrica said net debt was down to GBP500 million from GBP3.0 billion at the start of the year, including the impact of net proceeds from the sale of its Direct Energy business.

The company will not be providing any earnings or cash flow guidance for 2021, Centrica announced. Interim results are due to be released on July 22.

Shares were trading 0.1% lower at 57.79 pence each on Monday morning in London.

By Will Paige; willpaige@alliancenews.com

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Securities Mentioned in Article

Security Name Price Change (%) Morningstar
Centrica PLC 58.38 GBX -0.17

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