Origin Energy

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Origin Energy Ltd
Traded as ASXORG
Industry Energy
Founded February 2000, but parts of the business date from the 20th century
Headquarters Australia Square
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Key people
Grant King (MD)
Products Electricity, natural gas, solar panels, LPG, hot water, heating and cooling, electric vehicle charging
Revenue Increase A$14,619 million (2013,[1])
Increase A$760 million after tax (2013)
Number of employees
6,000 (2013)
Website Origin Energy Origin LPG

Origin is an Australian energy company headquartered in Sydney.


Origin Energy was formed in February 2000, as a result of a demerger from the Australian conglomerate Boral Limited, in which the energy business was removed from the building and construction materials business to form the new company.[1]

Between 2001 and 2002, Origin acquired the Victorian electricity network suppliers Powercor and CitiPower. In 2004, the SEA Gas Pipeline was completed and commissioned, which served to link the Victorian and South Australian gas markets. During this time, Origin obtained 50% interest in the Kupe Gas Field, and managed to obtain Edison Mission Energy's 51.4% interest in New Zealand's Contact Energy.[1]

On 27 November 2006 the Queensland Government announced the sale of Sun Retail Pty Ltd, the former retailing arm of ENERGEX to Origin Energy for $1.202 billion.Sun Retail includes some 840,000 residential, commercial and industrial electricity customer accounts and 55,000 LPG customers.[2]

On 15 December 2010, Origin Energy announced that it would purchase the retail divisions of Country Energy and Integral Energy from the Government of New South Wales, at a total cost of A$3,250 million,[3] as well as entering a GenTrader agreement with Eraring Energy (in which Origin supplies fuel, pays certain charges, and can dispatch and sell electricity output, while Eraring Energy owns, operates and maintains the power stations). The transaction was completed on 1 March 2011.[4]

Core business[edit]

Uranquinty Power Station (Natural gas)

Origin Energy is active in a number of sectors in the energy business:

  • Oil and gas exploration and production - Origin has conventional oil and gas reserves in the Cooper Basin of South Australia and Queensland and in the Bass strait between Victoria and Tasmania and coalbed methane reserves in Queensland. Outside Australia, Origin operates the Kupe gas field in the Taranaki Basin of New Zealand.
  • Retail - over three million retail customers of gas or electricity in Australia, New Zealand and the south Pacific, inclusive of the 800,000 customers of Sun Retail in QLD that were acquired in February 2007.
  • Generation - generating electricity from natural gas including Osborne, Ladbroke Grove and Quartantine Power Stations in South Australia, Uranquinty in New South Wales, and in Queensland there is Darling Downs Power Station near Dalby, Mount Stuart Power Station in Townsville and Roma Power Station. Origin Energy also owns the coal-fired power station at Eraring in Lake Macquarie New South Wales. Mortlake Power Station is being developed in Victoria.
  • Contact Energy - Origin owns 52% of New Zealand electricity generation and retail company Contact Energy.
  • Gas transportation and distribution - Origin had significant shareholdings in Envestra Limited (17%) and SEAGas pipeline (33%). These shareholdings were sold to APA Group during 2007, along with the assets of Origin Energy Asset Management. OEAM's major asset was its contract with Envestra for the maintenance of the Envestra natural gas distribution network.
  • Coal seam gas production and export is under development in conjunction with ConocoPhilips.

Origin is currently one of the largest residential solar retailers in Australia installing over 55MW of PV in the 12 months to August 2011.[5] Of the large energy retailers Origin moved first and aggressively into the residential solar market. In July 2011 AGL, Origin's major competitor purchased small solar retailer Rezeko[6] as a platform to complete in solar against Origin. AGL is yet to show success in residential solar. Origins biggest competitors in the space are True Value Solar and Nue Energy (by REC production).

Renewable energy[edit]

Challicum Hills Wind Farm

Origin is active in the renewable energy arena. It has spent a number of years developing:

  • Purchase contracts for the acquisition of electricity from Wind farms in South Australia and Victoria including the entire output produced by Pacific Hydro from the Challicum Hills wind farm located near Ararat and the Yambuk wind farm near Portland. Origin Energy is the largest buyer of wind energy in Australia.[7] Origin does not hold any equity positions in Australian wind farms, although its partially owned New Zealand affiliate, Contact Energy, has equity in New Zealand wind farms.
  • A solar energy business using solar cell technology invented by a team led by Professor Andrew Blakers at The Australian National University.[8] Origin Energy expected to be manufacturing its sliver cell technology for the Australian market by 2008.[9]
  • Geothermal power, a technology based on the conversion of heat sourced from deep, hot rocks into electricity. Origin's geothermal investment is via a minority shareholding stake in the Australian company Geodynamics.

Key executives[edit]

  • Gordon Cairns - Independent Non-executive Chairman
  • Grant King - Managing Director
  • Karen Moses - Executive Director, Finance and Strategy
  • Frank Calabria - Chief Executive Officer, Energy Markets
  • Andrew Clarke - Group General Counsel, Company Secretary
  • Carl McCamish - Executive General Manager, People and Culture
  • Phil Craig - Executive General Manager, Corporate Affairs
  • Paul Zealand - Chief Executive Officer, Upstream
  • David Baldwin - Chief Executive Officer, LNG
  • Dennis Barnes - Chief Executive Officer, Contact Energy, New Zealand


  1. ^ a b "Our history". Origin Energy. 
  2. ^ "New dawn for Qld energy market" (Press release). Energex. 1 February 2007. Retrieved 16 June 2014. 
  3. ^ "Country Energy sold to Origin". The Young Witness. 17 December 2010. Retrieved 17 December 2010. 
  4. ^ "Origin completes acquisition of Integral Energy and Country Energy retail businesses and enters binding GenTrader arrangements with Eraring Energy" (Press release). Origin Limited. 1 March 2011. Retrieved 10 April 2011. 
  5. ^ "Solar boom continues for Origin". Climate Spectator. 24 August 2011. Retrieved 25 August 2011. 
  6. ^ "AGL under the weather". Climate Spectator. 25 August 2011. Retrieved 25 August 2011. 
  7. ^ Origin Energy wind energy portfolio press release (Sept 2002)
  8. ^ Solar Energy at the ANU
  9. ^ Thin-cell solar power soon

External links[edit]