Scotland business

Profits fall at energy company SSE

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Scottish energy company SSE has said annual results have fallen well short of what it hoped, while it has faced tough competition and rising costs.

Pre-tax profits fell 38% to £725m.

SSE saw household electricity customer accounts drop to 3.46m from 3.82m - while gas accounts fell to 2.32m from 2.53m in 2017-18.

The company is still trying to confirm a buyer for its retail customer division, after a planned merger with rival energy firm NPower collapsed.

SSE shares dropped by 3% after the annual results were announced.

Chief executive Alistair Phillips-Davies said the Perth-based company would continue to invest millions of pounds in green energy projects.

Chairman's departure

The company also confirmed it has set a deadline for its chairman Richard Gillingwater's departure, saying he will leave his position no later than 31 March 2021.

Mr Gillingwater said: "While our financial results clearly fell well short of what we hoped to achieve at the start of the year, we've made significant progress towards our ambition to be a leading energy company in a low-carbon world."

He said the company had:

  • Continued to develop its core businesses of regulated energy networks and renewables
  • Demonstrated its ability to create and unlock value from developing and operating, as well as owning, assets
  • Adopted clear long-term goals to set up the business for long-term success.

Mr Gillingwater added: "The fundamental strengths of our business and the strategic opportunities afforded by the transition to a low-carbon economy will support the delivery of our five-year dividend plan and creation of value for society as a whole."

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