UPDATE 1-Orsted CEO favours small deals over big M&A

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(Adds CEO comments)

BERLIN, Jan 21 (Reuters) – Denmark’s Orsted, the world’s largest operator of offshore wind parks, plans to steer clear of super-sized takeovers, its chief executive said on Tuesday, opting instead for a string of small deals as a strategy to grow.

“I’m fundamentally convinced that you de-risk your M&A strategy by not overstretching it,” Henrik Poulsen told Reuters during the annual energy summit hosted by Handelsblatt newspaper in Berlin.

“I’d rather make a series of small acquisitions than one big bang where we could stumble,” Poulsen said, adding any deals would rather be in the hundreds of millions, similar to recent acquisitions in the United States.

Poulsen, Orsted’s CEO since 2012, oversaw the group’s transformation from a diversified utility with oil and gas activities into the world’s No.1 in offshore wind.

Poulsen said he expected the global green energy sector to be dominated by traditional utilities as well as big oil groups, which have been increasingly moving into the power sector as a way to diversify away from fossil fuels.

“We’ll be a lot smarter in probably less than 5 years but when you see the landscape today you can begin to see the future global green energy majors emerge,” he added. (Reporting by Christoph Steitz, Vera Eckert and Tom Kaeckenhoff; Additional reporting by Stine Jacobsen in Copenhagen; Editing by Thomas Seythal and Michelle Martin)

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