The great capital is in Enagás

There are years easy, others difficult... and then there is who has lived Enagás, one of those companies that does not usually —much less intended— to give big

The great capital is in Enagás

There are years easy, others difficult... and then there is who has lived Enagás, one of those companies that does not usually —much less intended— to give big headlines. The CNMC was on the verge of to do to drop a meteor on the atmosphere of the Spanish group in 2019 with its intention to slash the compensation of the transport network of natural gas and the regasification plants. But the asteroid passed almost touching by the energy sector which, even so, you will see how, in his case, the remuneration you will receive in the six-year period 2021-2026 pass of 6.618 million that would have entered the basis of calculation current at 5.920 million, or 11% less.

The panic was made with the action at the beginning of June: in just a week the company lost 17% of its market value. Past the tragus and with prices recovering, from his office in Madrid, the president of the company, Antonio Llardén, explains it now with the perspective that you give to the months: “it Has been a complicated year for companies that we quote. The movements on the Stock market, in good part, depend on elements in short-term and global, not only of what you as a company can do”.

The threat of regulatory was solved with a new proposal for circular, but other news neutralized, in part, the previous. Of the hand of Blackstone and GIC (sovereign wealth Fund of Singapore) and after gaining 12.6% in the spring, at the end of the year Enagás went on to announce that they did it with the 30% of the american Tallgrass in an operation 756 million. It was the largest purchase ever made in the history by the Spanish. Tallgrass plays in the same league: it is a powerful signature of energy infrastructure that owns, among other assets, of the 11,000 kilometers of gas pipelines, transport, 2,400 km of gas pipelines of gas extraction and a pipeline of another 1,300. It is, also, pica in Flanders that are needed for the Spanish company to complete its project of internationalization and plug the holes in revenue that are coming —equivalent, for example, two-thirds of the costs of personal current—. Provided, of course, that its new subsidiary complies with the objective for which it has been acquired: to provide stable income to the group. “It's an investment that does not fall from the sky, was the result of three years of study. I'm an engineer, I enjoy the planning and have a strategy in which we try not to improvise, with various scenarios. We wanted to consolidate our international investment in those sites where we thought that made sense, and I think we succeeded”, explains Llardén. Until September, the income of Enagás have been depleted in a few hundred million euros to 904 million, with a net profit slightly in excess of 2018, 333 million, and a debt of 4.234.

A turning point

A past event explains this last purchase and all of the expansion of the Enagás outside of Spain. Starred more than a decade ago the deceased Salvador Gabarró, president of Gas Natural (today Naturgy) and is a director of Enagás, when in a meeting where addressing your strategy, asked those present what they wanted to be older. Llardén has responded with the wide-ranging program of investment that Enagás had to carry out in Spain until 2013. “But he went beyond. I knew that there would come a time that the network would not need thousands of millions, and the company could lose skills [capabilities] and jobs. The answer was to internationalize, that was the plan I envisioned”. Llardén chose to do this in two areas: Europe along with countries of north Africa and in the axis, american Pacific, with a focus on Chile, Peru, Colombia, Mexico, and the united STATES. “I picked up the briefcase and I went to see one-to-one to the 30 or 40 international investors more important. In a year we came to the conclusion that three-quarters understood our plan.” Its first investment, in late 2011, it was in a regasification plant in Altamira, Mexico. Since then all subsequent bets have been made to progress the template: from 950 employees to 1,350 today. Governance also changed when, after the crisis, the hard core of shareholders spaniards were leaving the company and giving way to the large international capital calling for new forms of management.

what Really were new? In September 2012 there was created the figure of the ceo, embodied today by Marcelino Oreja —exeurodiputado between 2002 and 2004 for the PP— which shares weight executive with the president carved up the duties. Llardén denies that it was a appointment political (the State, through SEPI, has a 5% of the capital), and emphasizes that Ear came from the private sector and had international experience. “Changed the skin of the investors and, in consequence, of the council”. A council, however, has since 2014 as independent figures to also expolíticos PP Ana Palacio, Isabel Bacon or Antonio Hernández Mancha.

Returning to the immediate, last year there was another shock in the Spanish market: the strong growth of 16.9% up to September, demand for natural gas in Spain explained by the very high need for gas for power generation by a deficit of water and the increased industrial demand. All in all, 2020 brings calmer waters to the operator. “From the lows of September, the share price is moving inside a flawless uptrend channel”, tried in the analysis department of Bankinter. Sabadell, however, maintains its recommendation of the sale because it believes it has “little potential, despite the relief of cuts”.

The money Amancio Ortega and hydrogen

By law, no one can have more than 5% of Enagás. This has deterred to a great deal of funds and fortunes international family aspire to have some control over the companies in which they invest. But it has not been an obstacle to Amancio Ortega, who, through Pontegadea, I was done with that percentage in the past month, paying 282 million in a capital increase designed to finance the purchase of Tallgrass, although it remains to be seen if it's worth the weight to designate a member on the council. The company doesn't comment on any details of the operation. Market sources added that an investor as the owner of Inditex has sought in it a refuge, a stable that does not offer surprises.

Because even in the changes more disruptive, Enagás is going slowly. Now drives a number of plans for do flow through their pipes gas renewables as hydrogen and biomethane. The first is the eternal promise for achieving the objectives of neutrality of emissions because, as pointed out by Llardén, “is almost infinite, storable and easily transportable”. The hydrogen green, obtained from water by electrolysis, however, is not for the time being economically viable, though some countries in Europe have already launched planes the national.

Updated Date: 13 January 2020, 01:00

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