Belfast Telegraph

Company Report: SONI Ltd


John Simpson

By John Simpson

SONI Ltd is a wholly owned subsidiary of EirGrid plc, registered in Dublin. It is within the remit of the NI Utility Regulator and functions as the licensed transmission system operator for electricity in Northern Ireland.

SONI and Eirgrid plc operate the Single Electricity Market (SEM) organisation, covering the electricity systems, north and south, which from September 2018 now includes the redesigned all-island single electricity market (I-SEM).

In preparation for the switch to the I-SEM, SONI engaged in a large investment programme. Capital spending on physical assets at £9.7m was 25% higher than a year ago but was supplemented by spending of £20m on new software and development costs which have been added to the balance sheet as intangible assets.

In the year to September 2018, the company made an operating profit of £7m compared to £3.8m the previous year and following an operating loss of £1.1m two years ago.

SONI has taken a lead role in presenting the planning application for the new cross-border electricity interconnector for which, it seemed, a successful final planning decision had been recommended.

Confirmation of that project, following an announcement of a reconsideration of the evidence already heard, is awaited.

The average number of employees in SONI increased from 112 in 2013 to 126 in 2017 and more recently has reached 132 people.

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SONI has responsibility to receive the funds for the Collection Agency Income Requirement Tariff (CAIRT) which supplements the funds available to the Moyle interconnector.

Separate details of recent CAIRT payments are not published in these accounts.

Belfast Telegraph