‘Danish energy group Dong puts its Dutch customers up for sale’

Danish energy company Dong is pulling out of the Dutch business and consumer market, the Financieele Dagblad said on Monday.

Overcapacity in the market and the increase in imports of subsidised German wind power are behind the decision, the Financieele Dagblad says. Dong has 150,000 customers in the Netherlands.

Dong has commissioned merchant bank Kempen to oversee the sale and talks are ongoing with a ‘small number’ of potential buyers, the paper says, quoting sources.

Foreign players

Dong bought itself into the Dutch market in 2005 by paying €40m for 40,000 Intergas customers. ‘They will be lucky if they get half that back,’ one banker told the paper.

Most of the Dutch energy market is in foreign hands, the FD points out. The four biggest operators are Nuon (part of Sweden’s Vattenfall), Essent (taken over by Germany’s RWE), French group GDF Suez and Germany’s EON.

Together they control 85% of the market and wrote off almost €6bn on their Dutch operations last year, the FD said.

Dong also wants to sell its share of the Enecogen joint venture with Eneco, but no buyer has emerged, the paper says.

Dong also has licences to build three offshore wind parks in the Dutch North Sea.

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