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‘Renewables Offer Energy Independence, Price Stability, Local Wealth And Job Creation,’ Says CEO Of ACCIONA

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“Renewables offer energy independence, price stability, local wealth and job creation”

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José Manuel Entrecanales, Chairman of ACCIONA Energía’s, told the company’s General Shareholders’ Meeting that the conflict in Ukraine underscores the importance of renewable energy for decarbonizing economies and enhancing “energy independence, price stability, and more local wealth and job creation than any fossil alternative”.

This was ACCIONA Energía’s first GSM following its IPO last year. In his speech, the Chairman highlighted that the company is now “a leader in ESG ratings, with a much more solid capital structure and a significantly lower cost of capital.”

“We have enormous investment opportunities in the vectors with the greatest potential in the sector, a privileged position to attract co-investors and partners, and a brand that is recognized and respected worldwide,” he added. As examples, he mentioned the joint venture with Plug Power for renewable hydrogen projects, the agreement with SSE to explore offshore wind projects, and the acquisitions made in electric vehicle charging infrastructure and energy efficiency services to position the company in growth solutions.

ACCIONA Energía’s Chairman said the conflict in Ukraine had led to “difficulties in executing projects at reasonable prices”, due to increases in the price of raw materials and disruptions in the supply chain. Nevertheless, he added: “Our extensive international presence in more than 30 countries guarantees a flow of profitable investment opportunities that will allow us to achieve our goal of doubling capacity by 2025 [to 20GW], which we set in our IPO.”

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LONG TERM VISION

Mr. Entrecanales stated that the company chooses investments “based on a balance between profitability and risk, strict sustainability requirements, and always with a long-term vision”.  He emphasized “the need for stable regulatory frameworks” to drive investment.

“When we invest, we do so under the tacit assumption of regulatory stability. We trust that the rules of the game will not change in mid-game. Therefore it is deeply frustrating, discouraging, and a disincentive to investment when that premise fails,” he said. The Chairman recalled the long-term impact of regulatory changes introduced in the Spanish market in 2013: “We lost almost ten years due to the profound and unexpected changes (…). If we had continued investing at the previous pace, we would be an ‘energy oasis’ instead of the ‘energy island’ we are today. We would be less reliant on fossil fuel imports, and less exposed to the volatility and costs of this dependence, with all the competitive, industrial, and social advantages this would have brought.” 

In his address to the GSM, Rafael Mateo, ACCIONA Energía CEO, said: “The strength and uniqueness of our strategy, based on a singular platform of assets and on geographical, technological, and commercial diversification, have produced results that have significantly exceeded the forecasts we had at the start of last year.”

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The 2021 results show significant growth in all indicators: revenue amounted to €2.47 billion (+40%), gross operating profit (EBITDA) was €1.09 billion (+25%) and net profit was €363 million (+77%).

Mr. Mateo highlighted the reduction of financial costs, as well as “a debt ratio of less than 1.83 times EBITDA, much lower than our peers, which allows us to financially secure our growth”.

ACCIONA Energía’s CEO said the company had managed the increase in raw material costs and global disruptions to supply chains to minimize the impact on project costs and deadlines. In parallel, the Company pursued an effort to “increase our project portfolio, which stands at 17 GW by 2025, plus an additional 33 GW in opportunities by 2030”.

With respect to the year in progress, Mr. Mateo said that ACCIONA Energía will have “more than 2.7GW of projects in different phases of construction” and that the commercialization of long-term energy solutions will be a fundamental pillar of the company’s growth.

The combination of high demand and a growing scarcity of new projects “represents a good opportunity for ACCIONA Energía to contract at attractive prices, both the energy produced by our projects under construction and that generated by our assets in operation”.

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ACCIONA Energía closed 2021 with more than 1,200GWh under contract in PPAs. The company remains the biggest 100% renewable marketer in Spain, closing the year with almost 8TWh supplied, and exceeding its portfolio targets for 2022 by 20%.

ACCIONA Energía’s CEO completed the year assessment with the balance of the social investment associated with the facilities that benefited more than 250,000 people, through more than 150 initiatives; a reduction of Scope 1 and 2 global emissions to 14 million tonnes of CO2; and a waste recovery rate of 97%. These figures led S&P to award the company the best ESG rating in the electricity sector. In 2021, ACCIONA Energía was ranked as the world’s greenest electricity company for the seventh consecutive year, according to the consulting firm Energy Intelligence.

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