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GDF SUEZ: 1Q12 Revenues and Group EBITDA preview

GDF SUEZ: 1Q12 Revenues and Group EBITDA preview

20.4.2012 10:06

GDF Suez is set to report 1Q12 Revenues and Group EBITDA on Tuesday 24 April before market opening.

A conference call is scheduled the same day at 8.30 CET. Dial in Details:
UK: + 44 203 043 2440 - English access code: 511191#
France: +33 1 72 00 15 10 - French access code: 404323#

We expect GDF Suez to report Group revenues of € 27.3bn and EBITDA of € 5.75bn. This represents a growth of 7% and 4% y/y.

Our View:
We see Group Revenues up 7% y/y to come in at € 27.3bn which compares to € 25.5bn reported over the 1st quarter of 2011. Growth should stem from the full consolidation of the old International Power assets for 3 months vs. 2 months over the same period last year (Energy International), a gas tariff increase announced in April 1 2011 for regulated customers (+4.9%) (Energy France), an increase in gas tariffs for non-residential regulated customers in both July and October of 2011 (Energy France) and a positive change in weather conditions after the exceptionally warm weather over the 1st quarter of 2011 (Energy France, Infrastructure, Energy Benedelux).

Group EBITDA should come in at € 5,751m, up 4.4% y/y, with the margin coming in at 21.1% vs. 21.6% reported over the same period of 2011. On the positive side GDF Suez should 1/ be able to recover part of the tariff shortfall (~€ 70m) related to the regulated Energy France activities; 2/ profit from improved weather conditions (+5-6TWh at € 15/TWh or ~€ 80m)); 3/ see a positive scope effect from the full consolidation from old International Power activities (~€ 120m) and the acquisition of the German Storage activities (~€ 25m); and 4/ be supported by projects being commissioned and an increase in E&P (prices and volumes) (~ € 200m). On the other hand, negative impact should stem from 1/ the € 10bn disposal program, mostly executed late 2011 (~ € -100m); 2/an adverse impact from power and gas spreads (~ € -100m) and uncertainties on the macro-economic environment (~ € -50m).

Conclusion:
We like GDF Suez’ recent move to increase its focus on emerging markets which should give it an edge over other integrated European Utilities and enhance Eps. On the other hand, the oversupplied European utility sector, and the risk for further political intervention, makes us decide to remain on the side line at this point in the cycle. This despite the attractive 8.0% gross dividend yield. We stick to our Hold rating and € 21/sh TP.


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