For energy companies, the consequences of the corona are slight compared to other industries. Germany’s largest utility company Eon is benefiting from its mega deal with former competitor RWE.
Essen (dpa) – According to Germany’s largest energy provider Eon, the new crown-related partial lockdown has yet to cause a decrease in demand for electricity and gas.
“So far this second lockdown appears to have a different economic effect,” Eon’s chief financial officer Marc Spieker said Wednesday, presenting third-quarter business figures. In April and May, the group, which supplies power to nearly 53 million customers in Europe, posted a good 6 percent drop in sales of power and industrial customers by as much as 10 percent. Since then, energy demand has returned to pre-crisis levels.
However, Corona did not pass Eon without a trace. Special effects adjusted profit (EBIT) fell in the first nine months by around € 300 million to € 2.7 billion. In the UK, the group had to temporarily send 3,000 employees to part-time jobs in early summer. Eon’s business has proven to be very strong overall, Spieker said. Markets would recover faster than expected.
Eon has also weathered the crisis well so far because, after taking over RWE’s former subsidiary Innogy, the group is concentrating on operating power grids and selling electricity and gas. The operation of the network ensures reliable income from Eon and the drops generally offset each other in subsequent years. Except for short-lived nuclear power plants, the group hardly generates electricity.
The criticism of utilities, which see a distortion of competition in the market power of the new Eon, was dismissed by Spieker as “too much noise for nothing.” The EU does not see any restriction on competition, as it has now confirmed again. Several of Eon’s competitors are suing the EU court against the approval of the Eon / RWE deal by the EU Commission.
The Eon group is the largest electricity grid operator in Germany. Since the beginning of the year, the division has contributed more than 80 percent of profits with 2.3 billion euros. Eon also supplies electricity and gas to some 13.9 million customers in Germany, now largely under the Eon name. The removal of the Innogy name did not result in any major customer migration. Eon is also the partner of choice for the municipalities that award the concessions for the electricity and gas networks. We have managed to take over almost all the network concessions that Innogy had.