February 24, 2018 / 8:22 AM / 10 months ago

Kenya's KenGen says H1 pretax profit down 7 pct

NAIROBI, Feb 24 (Reuters) - Power producer Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen) posted a 7 percent drop in pretax profit for the first half of its financial year to 6.08 billion shillings ($59.7 million) as depreciation expenses rose.

The company said in a statement published in local newspapers on Saturday that its total revenue rose to 18.61 billion shillings in the six months ended December from 17.74 billion in the same period a year earlier.

That was largely driven by electricity sales, which rose 2 percent to 14.92 billion shillings, with just over a third coming from geothermal power generation.

It said depreciation and amortisation expenses were up 15 percent to 5.19 billion shillings due to the capitalisation of its geothermal wells and wellheads towards the end of last year.

Kenya has an installed generating capacity of 2,370 megawatts (MW) and peak demand of about 1,770 MW. Of this, KenGen, which is 70 percent owned by the government, has an installed capacity of 1,631 MW, including 533 MW from geothermal sources.

KenGen plans to add another 1,745 megawatts (MW) of electricity capacity from geothermal sources by 2025.

It said operating expenses rose to 4.65 billion shillings from 4.39 billion shillings a year earlier due to maintenance costs at its power plants.

Basic earnings per share fell to 1.86 shillings from 2.10 shillings a year earlier, the company said, adding it would not pay an interim dividend.

$1 = 101.8000 Kenyan shillings Reporting by George Obulutsa; Editing by Mark Potter

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