(Adds comments from CEOs, details)
COPENHAGEN Dec 21 Danish utility and wind farm
developer DONG Energy, whose listing in June was one
of the biggest IPOs globally this year, raised its full-year
earnings forecast on Wednesday, helped by the sale of a stake in
its UK offshore wind farm.
The company increased its forecast for earnings before
interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) to 24-25
billion Danish crowns ($3.37-$3.51 billion) from 20-23 billion
previously. It also estimated gross investment would be in the
lower end of a 18-21 billion range.
"We have had a really good year in DONG Energy and made
significant strategic and operational progress in all business
units," chief executive Henrik Poulsen said in a statement.
The increase in guidance was partly triggered by the sale of
a 50 percent in the 573 megawatt Race Bank wind farm in Britain
to Macquarie European Infrastructure Fund 5 and Macquarie
Capital - parts of Australia-listed Macquarie Group.
Profits from selling the stake would amount to 1.6 billion
pounds ($2 billion), DONG said.
"We have seen a high level of interest from a number of
potential investors in Race Bank. This proves that our
partnership model continues to be attractive," chief executive
of the company's wind power unit, Samuel Leupold, said in a
DONG also said the earnings upgrade was due to strong
operational performance and cost reductions in its oil and gas
unit, which the company intends to sell, potentially to Danish
group A.P. Moller-Maersk.
DONG shares jumped as much as 4.8 percent after the
announcement, and were up 2.5 percent at 253 crowns at 1415 GMT.
($1 = 7.1278 Danish crowns)
($1 = 0.8079 pounds)
(Reporting by Nikolaj Skydsgaard; Editing by Mark Potter)