TransAlta profit rises on lower maintenance costs
(Reuters) - Canadian power generation company TransAlta Corp (TA.TO: Quote) reported a 58 percent rise in fourth-quarter profit, helped in part by lower maintenance costs.
TransAlta, which has plants in Canada, the United States and Australia, said it expects costs to fall by C$25-C$30 million by 2013. The company did not provide total cost figures for 2012 or 2013.
Net earnings attributable to common shareholders for the quarter ended December 31 rose to C$38 million ($37 million), or 15 Canadian cents per share, from C$24 million, or 11 Canadian cents per share, a year earlier.
Comparable earnings increased to 21 Canadian cents per share from 13 Canadian cents per share.
The Calgary-based company said comparable earnings were driven by the acquisition of the 125 megawatt dual-fuel Solomon power station, which is in the Pilbara region of Western Australia.
The company said in September the acquisition was expected to generate unlevered after-tax returns in the low double digits and pre-financing cash flows of about C$40 million per year.
TransAlta's revenue in the fourth quarter fell 6 percent to C$661 million.
Funds from operations for the company -- whose energy sources are coal, natural gas, hydro, wind and geothermal -- rose 8 percent to C$205 million.
The company said in October it expects to incur a one-time after-tax charge of C$10 million-C$15 million in the fourth quarter related to about 165 job cuts. Continued...