Energy giant EDF has announced £1.7 billion in annual profits – a 7.5% increase – just two months after hitting 3.7 million British households with a hike in bills.
But the French-owned business, which regulator Ofgem identified as the most complained about of the "big six" energy firms at the end of last year, insisted its division which supplies gas and electricity to domestic consumers had continued to make losses and was being propped up by its power-generation business.
Revenues at EDF's UK arm rose by 6.4% to 9.7 billion euros –equivalent to £8.4 billion – in 2012.
EDF, which received 8,072 complaints for each 100,000 customers in the final quarter of the year, also increased its prices in a move which saw household bills rise by 10.8% on average in early December.
But it said profits were driven by its nuclear and coal-powered energy-generation arm, which accounts for around 95% of its UK earnings. It said this division had been offsetting losses at its UK domestic energy supply business, which fell into the red by £124 million in 2011.
EDF added it re-invested £1.3 billion into its services and nuclear and coal stations, up £200 million on 2011. The group is currently in talks with the UK government over investment for its nuclear reactor at Hinkley Point, which is expected to cost around £7 billion.
EDF chief executive Vincent de Rivaz said: "Our financial performance last year enabled us to make significant investments in both our existing power stations and our plans for new nuclear stations in the UK, which will help keep the lights on in future with reliable, secure and low carbon energy."