Berkshire Sl4 5gd, United Kingdom (PressExposure) May 14, 2009 -- Centrica plc, through its British Gas New Energy division, today announced that it has acquired a 19 per cent share of Econergy Ltd ('Econergy'), for a cash consideration of Â£1 million. The deal includes the right to acquire the remaining share capital of the business over the next four years.
Econergy is a leader in biomass heating, which replaces fossil fuels with renewable energy sources for combustion to produce heat. Econergy sells, designs, installs and maintains these systems for individual domestic properties, business and public sector customers. It also provides community solutions in the form of district heating schemes. The company's turnover for the year ended June 2008 was Â£5 million.
The deal complements British Gas' acquisitions in 2008 of Solar Technologies Group Ltd and Semplice Energy Ltd, the equity investment in, and development and distribution agreement with, Ceres Power Holdings plc and technology partnerships with Baxi, Disenco and vPhase.
GearÃ³id Lane, Managing Director of British Gas New Energy, said:
"This investment is another step forward in our development of a broad range of renewable, energy efficient and low carbon technologies that we can offer our customers, helping them to use less and use cleaner energy".
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Notes to editors:
* Government is committed to deliver 15 per cent of total energy from renewables by 2020. Renewable heat is expected to grow significantly, from less than 1 per cent of the market today to 14 per cent in one Government scenario. Biomass could represent 40 to 80 per cent of renewable heat according to the same Government study1.
* Biomass is organic, non-fossil fuel material (eg wood chip). This can be burned to produce heat, electricity and a combination of heat and power.
* Biomass is carbon neutral as the CO2 that is released into the atmosphere through combustion is the same as that which the plant absorbs during its growth.
* The Renewable Heat Incentive, a subsidy for the supply of renewable heat, is expected to provide appropriate support for the technology from 2011.
* Centrica plc is acquiring a 19 per cent stake in Econergy Ltd through its wholly-owned subsidiary GB Gas Holdings Ltd.
* British Gas supplies gas and electricity to UK residential and business customers and provides central heating and gas appliance installation services.
* British Gas is one of the largest electric companies in Britain's domestic market.
* British Gas are also Britain's largest operator in the central heating [http://www.britishgas.co.uk/products-and-services/boilers/need-a-boiler/central-heating-systems.html] sector.
1 UK Renewable Energy Strategy Consultation, June 2008.