Profits power up at ESB while Tynagh Energy picks up slack

The ESB made an operating profit of €294m in the first six months of this year. The State energy company will pay a €38m dividend to taxpayers, taking the total paid to the Exchequer over the past decade to €1.2bn.

Operating profits in the first half of the year were up €50m on the same period in 2018.

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ESB’s chief financial officer (CFO) Pat Fenlon, said the ESB also successfully issued Ireland’s first corporate public Green Bond during the period to fund environmentally sustainable projects.

“Through our Brighter Future 2030 Strategy, consistent with the Irish Government’s recently published Climate Action Plan, ESB continues to invest in energy infrastructure to help deliver a low-carbon-energy future,”

Meanwhile, Tynagh Energy Ltd, the private company contracted to pick up the electricity supply slack when the power in the national grid dips, has seen a sharp rise in its revenue.

A relatively bad summer for wind in 2018 and power-downs at some ESB plants helped boost output at the Tynagh Energy plant in Galway.

Industry sources say demand for back-up power is expected to remain high, not least because the huge electricity station at Moneypoint, Co Clare, is approaching the end of its operational life – potentially within a decade.

Tynagh Energy opened its plant in 2006 and has a 10-year contract to be the State’s backup power generator. Accounts just filed for Tynagh show revenues shot up to €120m last year, from €68m in 2017. Profit for the year dropped however, to €1.78m from €2.85m.

Earlier this month the Sunday Times reported that Czech power firm EPH Republic had moved to buy an 80pc stake in the Tynagh Energy from current owners GE Energy Financial Services and Turkey’s Gama Energy International.

Businessman Bran Keogh’s Mountside Partners owns the other 20pc.

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