The National Grid is set to sell a majority stake in its gas distribution business, in a multi-billion pound deal that could get underway early next year. The UK power operator is doing well financially, recording a 21 per cent jump in adjusted pre-tax profits, up from £1.14bn to £1.37bn in the six months to 30 September, and says it wants to "realise the value it has created in the networks."
It's power supplies that are causing concern. Earlier this year, National Grid admitted that the UK could be facing a winter of blackouts, and the company last week advised 'heavy users' to switch to back-up power. Since it delivers gas to around 11 million customers and owns 82,000 miles of pipeline, the move is likely to have a significant effect on consumers.
"Our business has delivered a strong performance in the first half of the year while maintaining high standards of safety and reliability for our customers and increasing our level of investment, said chief executive Steve Holliday. "Our UK Regulated businesses and other activities remain on track to deliver good performance this year." He also told the BBC that the winter would be ‘tight but manageable’.
Image credit: David Ambridge via Flickr