The Abu Dhabi-based utility National Central Cooling Company (Tabreed) has reported its profits doubled for the first quarter of the year to AED43.8m ($11.9m) from AED21.7m in the same period in 2009.

Underlying profits increased by 15 per cent on the back of strong growth in the company’s core chilled water business.

“We have a strong core business of chilled water and a steady pipeline of new plants coming on stream,” says Sujit Parhar, CEO of Tabreed.

Its chilled water business recorded sales of AED117.1m, an increase of 91 per cent over the same period last year, while its profits more than doubled to AED22.8m, as a result of three new plants coming online in 2009 and four new plants being added in the first quarter of 2010.

These four plants added 27,000 tonnes of refrigeration (TR) capacity, bringing its total installed cooling capacity to 422,100 TR across 40 plants. 

Tabreed expects nine further plants to come on stream in the remainder of 2010.

However, total revenue declined by 2.68 per cent to AED184.6m from the AED189.7m in the same period in 2009.

“We acknowledge the challenges facing the business in the year ahead and those associated with our recapitalisation process, but we are confident of the long-term prospects for the company,” says Parhar.  

On 8 March this year, Tabreed announced its intention to submit a recapitalisation programme for shareholders’ approval.

Shareholders will decide on providing the board with the authority to move forward with the programme at a 28 April extraordinary general assembly. 

Tabreed hopes to complete the recapitalisation in the fourth quarter.