SSE reaffirms guidance despite renewables slump

SSE plc, the Perth-based electricity infrastructure giant, said it continues to expect to report full-year 2023-24 adjusted earnings per share of more than 150p “on the basis of a return to more normalised weather, and plant performance and market conditions continuing in line with expectations.”

In a first-quarter trading statement for its AGM, SSE said output of electricity from renewable sources in which SSE has an ownership interest was 624GWh — around 29% behind plan for the period to June 30, 2023 – mainly due to “adverse still and dry weather conditions.”

SSE said this represents a 5% shortfall on planned output for the full year.

SSE shares are up about 7% in 2023 at around £17.87, giving the firm a stock market value of around £19.5 billion – making it the biggest listed firm run from Scotland.

Renewables performance in Q1 was lower than planned, reflecting dry and still weather patterns well below the long-term average, equating to a 5% shortfall on planned renewables output for the year,” said SSE.

“However, the key months in SSE’s financial year are still to come and the first few weeks of Q2 have so far seen a return to more normal weather.”

SSE Finance Director Gregor Alexander said: “SSE is a long-term business with a clear strategy, and we remain focused on delivering the ambitious NZAP Plus growth plan that we announced in May.

“We are making good progress on the critical national infrastructure projects that underpin our growth plans out to 2027, and we continue to develop options that could see us invest up to £40bn over the next decade.

“We are seizing the long-term opportunities presented by net zero while in the near term, subject to normal weather and plant availability, our outlook for the full-year remains unchanged.”