Meralco revenues up 14% in Q1 to P62.6B

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Manila Electric Co. (Meralco), the country’s largest power distributor, reported consolidated revenues of P62.6 billion for the first quarter of the year, which was 14 percent higher than the P55.1 billion for the same period last year.

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Meralco President Oscar Reyes said the consolidated revenues accounted for 98 percent or P61.1 billion of the total revenues.

He said the 2015 consolidated revenues were three percent lower compared with 2014 after the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) ordered the Philippine Electricity Market Corp (PEMC) to recalculate the power purchases from WESM for December 2013.

The adjustment, which amounted to P9.3 billion, was passed on to the customers and to a large extent accounted for the significantly lower 2014 revenues compared with 2015, Reyes said.

He said the company’s sales volume grew by around 2.3 percent year-on-year or 8,092 gigawatt-hours (GWh) from the 7,908 GWh for the same period last year.

The sales growth within the Meralco franchise area was complemented by a 16 percent increase in electricity distributed by Clark Electric Distribution Corporation (CEDC) attributable to volume from new connections, Reyes said.

He said the number of Meralco customers also went up by four percent to more than 5.6 million primarily due to vibrant residential, commercial and industrial segment sales.

Residential customers, which account for 91 percent of Meralco’s entire customer base, rose with almost 198,000 new accounts or four percent over the same period in 2014, Reyes said.

“The increase in number of customer accounts translated to a two percent growth in energy consumption, year-on-year, with total residential volume amounting for 28 percent of total sales,” Reyes told reporters.

The average per capita consumption of the residential segment, however, was lower by two kilowatt-hour (khW) as a result of the numerous holidays and increasing awareness of energy conservation among consumers.

Commercial segment volume grew by three percent and accounted for a 40 percent share in total Company sales driven by the hospitality and services, real estate and retail trade industries.

Industrial volume grew by one percent year-on-year with contributions from the food and beverage, metallic and non-metallic industries.

Betty C. Siy-Yap, Meralco Senior Vice President & Chief Finance Officer said the company’s unaudited consolidated core net income amounted to P4.4 billion for the three months were eight percent higher compared with last year.

She said the consolidated net income, which excludes one-time, exceptional charges, for the period also stood at P4.4 billion, reflecting a 10 percent growth over 2014.

The higher consolidated core net income for the first quarter of 2015 as compared of last year was largely attributable to the combined effect of a more than two percent increase in electricity volume distributed.

This was supported by a four percent growth in Meralco customer base, growth in the number and volume of contestable customers of MPower, 14 percent increase in the contribution to net income from operating subsidiaries, affiliates and other related parties and improved yield on cash and cash equivalents, and other financial instruments.

Yap also said that the capital expenditure (Capex) of the company for the first quarter of the year was P3 billion.

Meralco Chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan said the Capex would help ease the tight summer supply situation in 2015 and 2016.

“These initiatives and developments are mer ely palliatives. The key to longer term power supply and price stability remains in developing and bringing in new highly reliable and life-cycle cost competitive generating capacity,” said Pangilinan.

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