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ENGIE Brasil Energia reported net operating revenue of R$ 2.6 billion in the first quarter of 2020, a 10.9% improvement on the result for the same period in 2019. This growth was a reflection above all of the greater amount of energy sold in the light of the startup in commercial operations of the Umburanas Wind Complex and the Pampa Sul Thermoelectric Power Plant during the course of 2019, the increase in average selling price as well as gains from trading operations.
The amount of energy sold under agreements increased from 9,050 GWh (4,190 average MW) in 1Q19 to 9,473 GWh (4,337 average MW) in 1Q20, an increase of 423 GWh (147 average MW) between comparable periods, while net average selling prices rose from R$ 188.0 to R$ 192.0 between the same quarters for consecutive years.
Ebitda (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization) reached R$ 1.3 billion in the first three months of the year, an improvement of 9.8% year-on-year. “Growth reflects mainly the entry into operation of Umburanas and Pampa Sul and the good first quarter results from our shareholding stake in TAG. Also contributing to earnings was the growth in energy sales volume and the increase in net average selling price as well as positive results from trading operations”, comments ENGIE Brasil Energia’s chief financial officer, Marcelo Malta.
Net income reached R$ 512 million from January to March, 9.5% lower than was recorded in the same period in 2019. This decrease reflects a combination of principally an increase in net financial expenses on debt for funding our acquisitions and the installation of our projects, in addition to the increase in depreciation costs on assets which went into commercial operations during 2019, particularly in the case of Pampa Sul.
Highlights of the 1st quarter
A ENGIE Brasil Energia extended its penetration in the energy transmission business with the acquisition of 100% of Novo Estado Energia, a concession for the construction and operation of approximately 1,800 kms of power lines in the states of Pará and Tocantins, in addition to the building of a new substation and the expansion of a further three, all at an estimated total investment of R$ 3 billion. “In the midst of this challenging environment, the Company is continuing to ramp up growth – for power generation cannot stop and infrastructure is needed to transmit production”, says ENGIE Brasil Energia’s chief executive officer, Eduardo Sattamini.
Loan agreements worth R$ 2.7 billion were signed with the Brazilian Development Bank (BNDES) for the installation of the Campo Largo Wind Complex – Phase II and the Gralha Azul Transmission System. In the case of the Gralha Azul Project, four work fronts have been operational since the beginning of the year in different regions of Paraná for the construction of 15 transmission lines interconnecting ten substations, five of these new installations and the remaining five, expansions.
Highlights of the 1st quarter
ENGIE Brasil Energia extended its penetration in the energy transmission business with the acquisition of 100% of Novo Estado Energia, a concession for the construction and operation of approximately 1,800 kms of power lines in the states of Pará and Tocantins, in addition to the building of a new substation and the expansion of a further three at an estimated total investment of R$ 3 billion. “In the midst of this challenging environment, the Company is continuing to ramp up growth – for power generation cannot stop and infrastructure is needed to transmit production”, says ENGIE Brasil Energia’s chief executive officer, Eduardo Sattamini.
Loan agreements worth R$ 2.7 billion were signed with the Brazilian Development Bank (BNDES) for the installation of the Campo Largo Wind Complex – Phase II in the municipalities of Umburanas and Sento Sé in the state of Bahia and the Gralha Azul Transmission System in the state of Paraná. As for the Gralha Azul Project, four work fronts have been operational since the beginning of the year in different regions of Paraná for the construction of 15 transmission lines interconnecting ten substations, five of these, new installations and the remaining five, expansions.
ENGIE Brasil Energia’s investments in 1Q20 were R$ 785.7 million, of which R$ 360.0 million were allocated for acquisition of the entire corporate stake in Novo Estado Energia. Significant investments were also made in the Campo Largo Wind Complex – Phase II, Gralha Azul Transmission Line, and the Pampa Sul Thermoelectric Power Plant.
Tackling the Covid-19 pandemic
During the first three months of the year, we took several initiatives for meeting the challenge of the Covid-19 pandemic, among them: the installation of a Crisis Committee, home office working, acquisition of rapid tests and donation of food, cleansing items and face coverings to communities in which the Company carries on its operations. As part of its objective of conserving cash, the Company has endeavored to raise new resources, roll over debt, adopt BNDES standstill packages at certain subsidiaries, a reduction in payout on fiscal year 2019 dividends and negotiations with clients, among other measures.
“Certainly, this is a time when many adaptations and changes must be made, including those involving the regulatory framework. In addition to steps of an assistance and liquidity nature being discussed, various aspects of the electricity sector susceptible to modernization are being debated at government level. More than ever, we must continue moving forward with reforms to expand the sector’s sustainability”, says Sattamini.
A total of 142 thousand face coverings have already been distributed and 36 thousand rapid tests have also been acquired and distributed meaning that we are able to conduct a protocol of periodic testing in 100% of all our teams. “For those working on a home office basis, we are seeking to engage and support our employees both from the professional as well as the personal point of view by offering services ranging from medical and psychological support to remote teaching facilities and online gymnastics”, points out Sattamini.
Donations to the community
The Company has joined forces with five other corporations in the electricity sector by providing emergency funding of R$ 1.5 million to the Oswaldo Cruz Institute Foundation (Fiocruz) for increasing the production of tests for Covid-19 diagnosis. Through the intermediary of its regional offices and projects with work in progress, ENGIE Brasil Energia has also allocated more than R$900 thousand to social organizations through initiatives for preventing and tackling COVID-19.
ENGIE’s employees have also been encouraged to make donations, the Company matching contributions in double and, at a second phase, trebling the amount collected. A total of R$ 250 thousand, involving 1,160 employees, was collected, and distributed among 33 institutions in ENGIE’s sphere of activities throughout Brazil.
A second stage in the campaign has since been rolled out with the participation of 920 employees and a total of R$ 701 thousand collected in donations from employees, ENGIE itself and the directors of ENGIE Brasil Energia who donated their directors’ fees for June, July and August. Total amounts collected were allocated for the acquisition of basic baskets of goods, PPEs and cleansing products.
In a partnership with Hospital Albert Einstein, ICUs have been equipped at two public hospitals in the city of São Paulo. Also worthy of mentioned is a grant of R$ 50 thousand to a startup for the development of a new method of testing for Covid-19.
Among the Company’s other initiatives is the “Face Masks for All” campaign. This consists of the donation of two thousand face masks the result of work by seamstresses from low income communities for the purpose and involving the stimulation of employee participation such that for each face mask acquired, ENGIE donates a further three to the Our District Project in the city of Florianópolis. The entire scheme has involved the donation of more than five thousand face masks.
Finally, the ENGIE Foundation donated EUR 100 thousand for the modernization of Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro’s University Hospital with 60 beds complete with an ICU, to remain in place at the service of society once the Covid crisis is at an end.