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Compound forecast declined after dry summer – targets for 2017



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Vienna (APA) – Due to the low water supply in the third quarter, Verbund will reduce its annual targets to 2018, which are still above the 2017 results. Despite the historically low water supply in the third quarter, profit Group's operating income up to September was higher than in the same period of the previous year.

In the third quarter, water supply with a coefficient of 0.74 was 26% below the long-term average. According to Verbund, July, August and September were the driest months since the recording began. However, due to above-average water supply through June, the hydroelectric coefficient of the water mills was only 4% below the long-term average of the last nine months by 0.96 and 2 percentage points above of the level of the previous year. This year's results were helped by a greater contribution to Network segment gains as well as by the successes of the cost reduction and efficiency improvement programs of recent years. On the other hand, revenues from flexible products fell, after 2017 was marked by positive effects.

Verbund's own production fell by 1.8% in the nine months to 24,347 gigawatt hours (GWh). In hydroelectric power, it increased by 2.0% to 22,893 GWh, but fell by 14.2% to 584 GWh in wind energy and 47.8% to 870 GWh in thermal energy. The Mellach gas-fired combined cycle plant produced 717 GWh less because of reduced congestion management and 80 GWh less at the Mellach coal-fired power plant.

The Mellach combined gas and gas plant is currently used only to ensure supply security in congestion management. A new contracting agreement (which also includes the Mellach district heating plant) was recently set under the aegis of E-Control from 1.10.2018 to 30.9.2021 with the Austrian Power Grid (APG). This year there were no impairments in Verbund's balance sheet for the first three quarters, as there was € 15.0 million in 2017 over the same period (€ 10.5 million, mainly due to the depreciation of the Mellach power plant) . So far, impairment reversals have so far reached 6.2 million euros, mainly for the dismantled power plants in Dürnrohr and Korneuburg; the reversal of the value added of € 38.2 million up to 30.09.2017 was entirely attributed to the then revaluation of Gell Mellach.

Total external supply in sales and distribution (+5.5 percent to 19,521 GWh) and external consumption losses and gas balancing, Verbund's total electricity supply increased 0.5 percent in September to 48,065 GWh . The Group's electricity sales also increased by 0.5% to 44,365 GWh; Of these, 20,768 GWh (-2.5 percent) were passed on to retailers, 14,174 GWh (+1.6 percent) to retailers and 9,424 GWh (+ 6.0 percent) to final customers. In the private client segment, Verbund had about 464,000 customers for electricity and gas at the end of September, according to the quarterly report.

In electricity sales, a decline in domestic business was more than offset by a significant increase in sales to overseas customers, he said. In Austria, electricity sales fell 16.6% to 20,437 GWh, but increased 19.4% to 20,644 GWh in Germany and 21.6% to 2,310 GWh in France.

Prices of electricity futures contracts (Front-Year-Base 2018, traded in 2017) averaged € 32.4 per megawatt / hour (MWh), an increase of 21.8% over the same period last year . Prices in the spot market rose by 20.7% to 41.7 euros / MWh in the period under analysis.

With a 3.7% drop in sales to € 2.081 billion in September, electricity revenues fell by € 165.9 million to € 1.614 billion. The main reason for the reduction in electricity revenues was the first-time adoption of IFRS 15 (net of revenue) in relation to net network charges / allocations, offset by reference expenses. Net revenues increased by € 74.7 million to € 371.7 million, mainly due to the increase in national network revenues due to the increase in tariffs. Other revenues increased € 10.3 million to € 95.2 million, mainly as a result of higher revenues from the sale of certificates of green electricity and supplies for district heating. Expenditure on electricity, network, gas and certificates decreased by € 110.3 million to € 984.9 million.

Up to September, Verbund increased EBITDA by 2.3% to 678.4 million euros and improved its consolidated profit by 4.9% to 282.8 million euros, 51% of the company said. , which should be associated with the planned reform of the state holding ÖBIB as ÖBAG that. For the full year, Verbund now expects only about 870 million euros EBITDA – at the end of July, the semi-annual report was still expected to be 950 million euros. The consolidated result can be seen in 2018 around 340 instead of 370 million euros, based on the average generation of hydro and wind energy. EBITDA amounted to 922 million euros in 2017 and the consolidated result reported to 301 million euros.

Adjusted for non-recurring effects, consolidated profit for the year, of which 40 to 45 percent will be distributed as dividends, is expected to reach around 335 million euros for 2018, most recently amounting to approximately 365 million euros. Up to September, adjusted net income increased by 10.1% to Euro 277.6 million. For 2017 as a whole, they were 354.5 million euros and the payout ratio was 41.2 percent.

Operating cash flow increased 12.0% to € 542.1 million in September, while free cash flow before dividends increased by 21.5% to € 389.0 million, according to Verbund. Net debt was reduced by 7.4% from the end of 2017 to 2.63 billion euros. Net debt decreased year on year to 46.3 (52.7) percent. Improving cash flow and reducing debt would increase financial flexibility, the company emphasizes.

The number of employees in the three quarters averaged 2,739, an average of 3.2 percent lower than the previous year.

Verbund's stock performed the best at ATX this year, up 110% by the end of September – and also the best performance of all European dealers. Currently, the titles are first in the ATX, about 79% above the beginning of the year. On Wednesday, they lost at the beginning of the trading session, partly fiercely (up 7%), and then traded at € 36.50 at 1.78% below the previous day – ATX stood at the same time plus 0.94 %.

~ ISIN AT0000746409 WEB http://www.verbund.com ~ APA176 2018-11-07 / 10: 03

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