CUC grows annual operating income but net earnings down

CUC's net earnings were $1.4 million lower than in the previous year because of higher finance charges.

Caribbean Utilities Company reported a $500,000 increase in its operating income for the full financial year 2017. The operating income for the year totaled $27.4 million as a result of a 2 percent increase in kilowatt sales and base rate increases of 0.1 percent and 1.6 percent that became effective in June 2016 and June 2017, respectively.

Sales were positively impacted by both an increase in the average residential consumption and overall growth in customer numbers.

Higher consumer services and depreciation expenses in 2017 partially offset these gains.

However, net earnings of $23.8 million were $1.4 million lower than in the previous year because of higher finance charges.

CUC President and CEO Richard Hew said, “2017 was another positive year for the company.

“Although sales were lower than forecast mainly in the fourth quarter due to wet and cool weather, the company was still able to absorb the first full year of depreciation and finance charges related to the 2016 Generation Expansion Project and post reasonably strong financial results.”

He noted that during the year CUC completed the public consultations for the Integrated Resource Plan study, which will give direction for the energy generation plans for Grand Cayman in the future. The study is with the regulator awaiting approval.

After the adjustment for dividends on the preference shares of the company, earnings on Class A ordinary shares for the year were $22.8 million, or $0.70 per Class A ordinary share compared to $24.3 million, or $0.75 per Class A ordinary share for the year 2016.