French energy giant Engie's shares rise on a positive outlook to its turnaround plan

Courtney Goldsmith
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Engie's shares were boosted by positive outlook in the firm's transformation plans (Source: Getty)

France's Engie booked a multi-million euro writedown today due to low power prices and high nuclear costs, but investors remain confident in the firm's overhaul strategy.

The firm also today agreed to acquire the regeneration business of Keepmoat for £330m. Keepmoat is the UK's leading provider of regeneration services specialising in refurbishing buildings.

​The figures

The world's biggest non state-owned electricity group revealed €3.8bn (£3.25bn) worth of impairment charges in 2016 due to low power prices and higher nuclear provisions in Belgium.

Shares in the Euronext Paris-listed firm jumped more than seven per cent in afternoon trading despite the firm revealing a year-end loss of €4m. That was down from a loss of €4.6bn the previous year.

Revenue fell to €66.6bn compared with €69.9bn in 2015.

Why it's interesting

Engie was forced to write down or sell off coal and gas-fired power plants after wholesale power prices hit decade lows last year.

However, renewed confidence in the group's strategic overhaul helped the firm's shares make gains today. Cheif executive Isabelle Kocher said the firm is ahead of schedule in its three-year transformation plan that was announced in 2016.

Engie has announced €8bn of disposals to date, or more than 50 per cent of the total programme, and made €4.7bn worth of investments.

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What Engie said

Kocher said the firm is ahead of schedule in its three-year transformation plan.

In one year, we have already signed more than 50 per cent of the planned disposals and identified 75 per cent of the investments. We are focusing and accelerating the development of our three core businesses: low-carbon generation, global networks – mainly gas ones – and integrated solutions for our customers.

Our performance plan, 'Lean 2018', is also progressing faster than expected, which enable us to raise its target by 20 per cent. All these levers confirm our 2018 objective: become a more agile, less carbonised and low-risk profile group, to be the leader of the energy transition in the world.

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