VERBUND, Austria's leading electricity company, is expanding its position as one of the major producers of hydroelectricity in Europe. The closing of the share transaction between VERBUND and E.ON, decided by agreement at the beginning of December 2012, was successfully concluded today. With that, VERBUND assumes shares in eight hydropower plants from E.ON on the rivers Inn and Danube, hence doubling its average annual generation in Germany to approximately 4 billion kilowatt hours (kWh). This corresponds to the annual electricity requirements of some 1.2 million households. This share transaction now makes VERBUND the sole proprietor of these eight power plants. In return, E.ON takes over VERBUND's 50% share in Turkish EnerjiSA. With that, VERBUND is not just the largest producer of hydroelectricity in Austria, but also in Bavaria, as well as the second largest in Germany, the major foreign market for the provider of green electricity.
VERBUND CEO Wolfgang Anzengruber: "This share transaction underlines our strategy: We want to concentrate of hydropower, majority shareholdings and the markets Austria and Germany. This transaction strengthens our position as one of the leading producers of hydroelectricity in Europe; we are increasing our power production from run-of-river plants by 9%; we are reinforcing our market position as a provider of green electricity in Germany and improving our risk profile." VERBUND's additionally acquired electricity generation volumes from hydropower exceed the entire feed-in quantity from wind power and photovoltaics in Austria in 2011.
VERBUND doubles hydropower generation in Germany
As part of the share transaction, VERBUND is taking over E.ON's shares in eight run-of-river plants in Bavaria. With that, these eight power plants are wholly owned by VERBUND. All of the approx. 200 employees are now VERBUND employees, increasing the VERBUND number of employees to around 3,300. With an additional average annual generation of some 2 billion kWh, VERBUND's hydropower generation will now increase to around 4 billion kWh. This corresponds to the annual electricity requirement of approx. 1.2 million households. Moreover, VERBUND, in the course of the transaction, will receive back around 240 million kWh of the production of the Zemm-Ziller power plant group.
Implementation of the added value from Turkey commitment
With the exchange of the 50% shares in Turkish joint venture EnerjiSA, VERBUND is implementing a significant added value from the six-year commitment in Turkey. With the additional hydropower capacities in Bavaria, the company disposes of renewable electricity generation which is wholly owned by VERBUND and immediately leads to a return flow of liquid assets. The acquisition of the hydropower plants in Germany, in addition, reinforces VERBUND's market position in its most important foreign market. In 2012, VERBUND sold approx. 42% of its electricity volume on the German market. With 87% of the volumes sold abroad, Germany constitutes the main emphasis of VERBUND's trading and sales activities.
The framework conditions for the European and global economy – especially the energy industry – currently pose a particular challenge. Against this backdrop, VERBUND is concentrating on the strategic priorities of hydropower, the markets Austria and Germany, as well as majority shareholdings. Moreover, VERBUND is backing wind power. In southeastern Europe, the company sees medium-term growth potential.