British Gas owner Centrica has inked a deal to offload oil and gas assets in the North Sea as it looks to accelerate its move towards net zero.
The sale of Spirit Energy’s Norwegian operations is an eagerly-awaited achievement for the company, which first unveiled plans to offload its 69pc stake back in 2019.
The overall value of the deal is £800m, with Centrica expected to take home proceeds of roughly £560m.
Boss Chris O’Shea said the sale would put the oil assets in the hands of buyers who can fund the decommissioning costs, allowing Centrica to focus on creating value from Spirit Energy’s remaining gas reserves.
5 things to start your day
1) 2G and 3G to be phased out by 2033 in blow to smart meter roll out The energy industry will have to upgrade older mobile networks to 4G
2) Amazon hit by IT issues wreaking havoc on US home deliveries Companies that use Amazon’s web services, such as Netflix, Disney+, Tinder, Coinbase and RobinHood, were also affected
3) Steep pay rises for public sector workers pose risk for inflation and NHS, says Treasury The Chancellor’s plans could hamper efforts to recruit more staff in the NHS and amplify the effect of inflation
4) Apple poised to become first $3 trillion company Report claims Tim Cook struck secret $275bn deal to spend more in China to appease Beijing
5) First plant-based Covid vaccine moves a step closer GlaxoSmithKline to co-produce a Covid jab grown only in plant cells in bid to catch up to rivals
What happened overnight
Asian stocks were broadly up Wednesday afternoon after a strong lead from Wall Street, but fears lingered over China’s debt-hobbled property sector.
In Hong Kong, Chinese real estate company Kaisa Group Holdings suspended share trading just before the opening bell, “pending the release by the Company of an announcement containing inside information”, according to a filing with the exchange.
By mid-afternoon in Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index was up 0.13pc, while Shanghai was up by more than 1pc.
In Tokyo, the benchmark Nikkei 225 index was up by 1.4pc at the close, to end at 28,860.62.
Coming up today
- Corporate: Numis, SSP Group, TUI Group (Full-year results); Berkeley Group; Stagecoach (Interim results); McColl’s (Trading update)
- Economics: Mortgage applications(US)