First GenFirst Gen Corporation reported recurring net income attributable to equity holders of P3.3 billion ($65 million) in the first quarter of 2020 from the operations of its 3,492- megawatt (MW) clean, lowcarbon and renewable portfolio.
This was a 15% or P0.7 billion ($12 million) dip from its P4.0 billion ($77 million) in earnings in the first quarter of 2019.
“With this unforeseen pandemic, 2020 will be challenging for all. Though electricity is an essential need, First Gen has not been spared from the difficulties. The lockdown imposed in March has translated into lower electricity demand. We are now more than ever strengthened in our strategy to catalyze the country’s movement towards a decarbonized future,” First Gen president and COO Giles Puno said.
First Gen’s natural gas-fired power plants delivered a decrease in recurring earnings for the period. The gas plants suffered from lower electricity sales resulting from depressed demand with the commencement of the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in the latter part of March, as well as higher operating expenses as it booked expenses to aid employees and third parties for ECQ.
From recurring attributable net income to parent of P2.4 billion ($45 million) in the first quarter of 2019, the gas platform generated P2.0 billion ($39 million) for the same period in 2020, a decrease of 13%.
Energy Development Corporation (EDC) contributed flat recurring earnings of P1.3 billion ($26 million) in the first quarter of 2020, almost unchanged in comparison to the P1.4 billion ($26 million) it earned during the same period last year.
The hydro platform’s recurring earnings contribution dropped by 51% or P0.3 billion ($5 million) at P0.2 billion ($5 million) for the first quarter of 2020 from P0.5 billion ($10 million) in 2019 mainly due to lower prices at the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM), though partially offset by higher ancillary service sales.
First Gen’s net income attributable to equity holders in 1Q20 was P3.3 billion ($65 million). This was P0.9 billion ($16 million) or 20% less than the 2019 earnings of P4.2 billion ($81 million) due mainly to lower electricity sales across all platforms, though partially offset by lower interest expenses and taxes.
First Gen’s consolidated revenues from the sale of electricity in the first quarter of 2020 declined by P3.6 billion ($52 million) or 10% to P24.4 billion ($481 million) compared to P28.0 billion ($534 million) in 2019.
The natural gas portfolio accounted for 60% of First Gen’s total consolidated revenues. Their revenues were 13% lower in the first quarter of 2020 mainly due to lower average natural gas prices coupled with a decline in the plants’ dispatch.
EDC’s geothermal, wind and solar revenues accounted for P9.0 billion ($178 million) or 37% of First Gen’s total consolidated revenues in the first quarter of 2020. From P9.4 billion ($180 million) in 2019, EDC’s revenues were slightly less by P0.4 billion ($2 million) mainly due to the lower prices at the WESM.
First Gen Hydro Power Corporation generated weaker revenues by P0.4 billion ($8 million) or 37% less than the P1.1 billion ($21 million) it generated in the first quarter of 2019 to P0.7 billion ($13 million) in 2020 due to poor WESM sales in terms of volume and price. The hydro plants account for 3% of First Gen’s total consolidated revenues.