Envestra Limited (ASX:ENV)
is predicting a 30 per cent jump in profit this year even though its customers are using less gas than they were a decade ago.
The natural gas distributor maintained guidance for a 30 per cent increase in full year net profit to $140 million.
The takeover target also reaffirmed its rejection of an all-scrip offer from larger gas pipeline owner APA.
Chairman John Allpass told the company’s annual general meeting that volumes delivered to residential and commercial markets for the first three months of fiscal 2014 were down 11 per cent on the previous year, and overall deliveries down seven per cent.
But Mr Allpass says increases in gas prices for retailers through regulated tariffs in NSW, South Australia and Queensland as well as reductions in finance costs will make way for more profit.
Envestra generated a net profit of $107.8 million in the 2013 financial year.