Ofgem announces new bidders for offshore contracts

Ofgem has revealed eight companies are in the running to run three transmissions networks for offshore wind worth in excess of a billion pounds. The contracts are for three networks […]

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By Sumit Bose

Ofgem has revealed eight companies are in the running to run three transmissions networks for offshore wind worth in excess of a billion pounds.

The contracts are for three networks the Gwynt y Mor near Angelsey, Lincs and the London array, all sites for huge windfarms. The London array (phase 1) will be the biggest of all generating a whopping 630MW. The bidding companies will basically provide the cables to connect these vast offshore generation fields to the National Grid and be responsible for the upkeep and security of supply along the network.

Ofgem’s business arm – ofgem E-serve – was responsible for deciding who should be in the running and its now shortlisted eight companies; Balfour Beatty Capital, Blue Transmission, Cheung Kong Infrastructure Holdings, Green Energy Transmission, Mitsubishi, National Grid Offshore Ltd, Transmission Capital Partners and Ventran Consortium. All now have until the spring to make their final cases.

Robert Hull, Managing Director of Ofgem E-serve said: “A strong field of bidders competing in this second tender round is further proof that the offshore regulatory regime is very successful in encouraging investment and attracting new players into the transmission sector.”

This is the second tender round, the previous round in August 2010 was worth £700m. There will be one more round due to start next spring for Humber Gateway, West Duddon Sands (off Blackpool) and Race Bank (near the Wash) and in total these six arrays will be worth £1.9billion