LONDON Jan 13 Centrica, Britain's
biggest energy utility, has completed its withdrawal from wind
power generation with the sale of a 50 percent stake in the
Lincs offshore wind farm to the Green Investment Bank, the
companies said on Friday.
Centrica's joint venture partner Siemens Project Ventures
has also agreed to sell its 25 percent stake to the
same buyer, while remaining shareholder Dong Energy
has retained its 25 percent stake and will take over
operatorship of the wind farm off the east coast of England.
Centrica said its net proceeds from the deal would come to
around 220 million pounds ($269 million).
The utility is implementing a major shift in strategy away
from its core energy generation business to focus more on
end-consumer services after years of weak profits from its
energy production unit.
Centrica first announced its intention to exit windpower
generation in 2015. Last year it realised net proceeds of around
115 million pounds from the sale of stakes in three wind farms.
In contrast Danish Dong Energy remains one of Britain's
biggest offshore wind investors. Three weeks ago it raised its
full-year earnings forecast after selling a 50 percent stake in
its Race Bank offshore wind farm to Macquarie.
Dong said on Friday that as part of the Lincs deal it had
also agreed to provide operation and maintenance services to the
wind farm, the first time it has concluded a support agreement
from an operating wind farm.
($1 = 0.8189 pounds)
(Reporting by Karolin Schaps; Editing by Greg Mahlich)