City expects acquisitions from Energy Assets

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GAS meter specialist Energy Assets could head back out on the acquisition trail after surprising the City by not recommending a dividend, according to analysts.

The Livingston-based firm – which operates meters for industrial and commercial customers of British Gas, Corona Energy and Dong Energy – bought Gazprom Global Energy Solutions (GGES) in October in a “transformational acquisition”.

Yet Julian Cater, an analyst at Canaccord Genuity, believes the firm may seal a further deal after not recommending a payout to shareholders yesterday when it unveiled its full-year results.

“Slightly surprisingly, the board has chosen not to recommend an inaugural dividend, preferring to prioritise investment in the company,” he said.

“While the focus of growth remains organic, we sense that the technology acquired with GGES – which has application across meters in the water, electricity, and photo-voltaic [solar panel] sectors – is leading management to contemplate other value-enhancing acquisitions.”

His comments came as Energy Assets posted a 34 per cent rise in underlying pre-tax profits to £3.9 million for the year to 31 March on the back of a 42 per cent rise in revenues to £18m.

Chief executive Phil Bellamy-Lee told The Scotsman: “We don’t have any acquisitions in the pipeline at the moment but we always look at opportunities.

“We’re already working in the water, electricity and solar power areas following the GGES acquisition and we’ll expand further in those sectors, but not significantly this year. There’s still a huge opportunity in the gas meters market.”