23 de octubre de 2015 / 15:21 / en 2 años

UPDATE 2-EDF aims to double its assets outside Europe

* Wants assets outside Europe to be at least 10 pct of total

* Aiming to grow strongly in energy efficiency services

* No plans for major acquisitions (Adds comments about energy services, hydropower)

By Geert De Clercq

PARIS, Oct 23 (Reuters) - French utility EDF wants to double the proportion of its assets outside Europe to at least 10 percent and grow strongly in energy efficiency services, Chief Executive Jean-Bernard Levy said on Friday.

The company has no plans for major acquisitions, however. The state-controlled company did not intend to acquire any other utilities or foreign grid operators and will focus on growth via projects, Levy told reporters.

Levy also reiterated EDF wants to double its renewable energy capacity from the current 28 gigawatts to 50 GW by 2030.

He said when he took his job at the start of the year that EDF did not have a fully-formed business strategy.

He said on Friday he wanted the firm to become a champion in low-carbon power production, with nuclear and renewable energy.

France, Britain and Italy would remain key countries, but he said low population growth and falling power consumption in Europe would force EDF to look for business in fast-growing emerging markets. This will be not through takeovers, though.

“We do not have the billions to acquire other utilities. We will develop our own projects,” Levy said.

EDF already invests about $2 billion per year in renewable energy capacity worldwide, though some of that gross figure may be sold on to partners, and Levy said most of EDF’s growth in renewables would come from wind power.

Levy said EDF had been late entering the energy efficiency business and the acquisition of energy services firm Dalkia from Veolia was not enough, as Dalkia focuses on the French market under the terms of the deal with Veolia.

“There is a huge opportunity in energy efficiency services outside France,” Levy said.

He said EDF did not have the means to buy an existing big player in this industry and would grow organically. EDF competitor Engie’s Cofely unit is European market leader in energy services.

EDF’s French hydropower business - which has installed capacity of 20 GW - might have to yield market share under pressure from the European Union to open the French market.

“Brussels is quite aggressive, so there is a risk that by 2030 we would have less hydro capacity than now,” he said.

He does see growth abroad in hydro, notably in Brazil, where EDF is building a 500 megawatt dam, and the firm has other hydro projects in Brazil, Africa and other regions, he said. (Editing by David Evans and Mark Potter)

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