Contact Energy share price lifts as it doubles profits to $99 million

This morning New Zealand-based Contact Energy Limited  (ASX: CEN) reported its half-year results for the period ending December 31 2018. Below is a summary of the results with comparisons to the prior corresponding half (all figures in NZ$).

  • Statutory profit of $276m
  • Profit from continuing operations of $99m, up 111%
  • Underlying profit per share $97m
  • Operating free cash flow of $203m
  • Adjusted profit per share from continuing operations of 13.8 cents
  • Interim dividend of 16 cents per share, up 23%
  • Target for full year dividends to total 39 cents per share

Contact Energy is the second-largest electricity and gas supplier in New Zealand with a market value close to $4.5 billion. Its shares are up around 20% over the past 5 years excluding the beneficial effects of dividends.

In total it’s aiming to lift dividends 22% over FY 2019, which would be the strongest result since FY 2016 when it also paid a special dividend.

The group reported electricity demand in New Zealand was flat over the period and carries net debt of $931 million on a net debt to EBITDAF ratio of 2.8x.

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