Letter from the Chairman

Letter from the Chairman

 
MANUEL MANRIQUE CECILIA,
Chairman and CEO
 

Welcome to the 2019 Integrated Report on Sustainability.

In these pages we focus on the key issues for our stakeholders, based on the materiality map updated in 2019 and drawing on the international framework of integrated reporting, the Sustainability Reporting Guidelines of the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board and the indicators recommended by the Global Reporting Initiative.

 
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As a company driven by strong values, we play a key role in society by creating and transforming infrastructure and its related services, thus supporting the economy, job creation and welfare. This is a major responsibility that we do not take lightly, because we want to retain the trust of all our stakeholders without exception.

To be sustainable in the long term we need a clear direction. We must steer our course to a high standard of excellence, achieving an optimal balance between long-term value creation and short-term results, while retaining a balanced financial structure. We have accordingly set out these goals in our mission, vision, values and corporate policies, which I invite you to read in this Report.

Furthermore, we strive to ensure that all those who make up the group's companies accept this policy as their own, and show due respect towards the environment and society, because caring for this planet is everyone's responsibility.

The ultimate aim of this report is to reflect the transparency and professional ethics that guide our journey and enable us to remain one of the leading companies in the industry. We want all our stakeholders to feel that we are approachable and to obtain all the information they need about our way of doing things, which we believe to be the most balanced and appropriate.

I would like to summarise the main performance milestones of the Sacyr Group and its companies during 2019:

  • the Concessions division grew revenue by 27% with respect to 2018 thanks to the increase in construction revenues, good progress in the execution of the latest contracts awarded, a strong performance of traffic and the entry into operation of the Tepual and Chacalluta de Arica airports, both in Chile;
  • Engineering and Infrastructures achieved 21% growth on the previous year due to the progress of key projects in its strategic markets;
  • while Services grew 6% as a result of the strong performance of revenues in all its business divisions, which increasingly focus on public and private sector service concessions.

However, Industrial revenue dropped by 33%, following the completion of major projects in the backlog in Peru.

At Sacyr, we continue to be strongly committed to cementing our position as a global company. We are already firmly established in countries such as Colombia, Chile, Portugal, Peru, Italy, United States, Australia, Oman, Algeria, Uruguay, Paraguay, Qatar, Ecuador, Brazil, Bolivia, Mexico and Ireland. Evidence of this is the fact that 60% of revenue and 77% of the backlog are generated outside Spain.

EBITDA stood at 680 million euros, 25% above that obtained in 2018, thanks to the result of the strategy of our Company which focussed on profitability and generating cash from the projects, as well as the strict risk management system and cost control, which positioned the EBITDA ratio in relation to revenue at 16.3%, versus 14.3% the previous year.

The attributable loss was -298 million euros as a result of the negative contribution from Repsol of -354 million euros. The oil and gas company wrote down the book value of some of its operation and production assets in the United States and Canada by close to -4,800 million euros after tax to reflect the reduction in the expected future price of gas. Repsol also set aside provisions of 837 million euros following an adverse second partial award in international arbitration proceedings.

As to key balance sheet figures, in 2019 total assets stood at 13,907 million euros, while equity was 1,190 million euros. The significant reduction in the Group's debt over the last eleven years continues to be of particular note, with net financial debt having been reduced from 19,526 million euros (at year-end 2008) to 4,315 million euros (at year end 2019), almost 80% lower; furthermore, the majority of that debt, 3,467 million euros, is linked to project financing and thus without recourse to the parent.

The Group's activity was widely secured by the backlog, which in 31 December 2019 stood at 42,965 million euros, up 3% on the previous year, mainly thanks to the inclusion of major contracts, as described later when each division's performance during the year is explained. Of the entire backlog, more than 77% is international. By business activity, in Construction overseas contracts represent 88% of the total; in Concessions 84%; in Services 23%; and Industrial 42% of prospective revenue.

In the year, Sacyr continued to implement the Group's new strategy, based on boosting those businesses in which we are leaders and experts, focussing on the development and operation of infrastructure and service concessions, which allow for the generation of predictable and stable funds.

All the foregoing, tied to management measures based on reducing costs and debt will lead to a stronger, more innovative and more competitive Group, that is more committed to the traditional values of our Company: prudence, austerity, quality and compliance with the commitments assumed.

Revenue in the Concessions division amounted to 1.007 million euros, up 27% on 2018, with income from concessions reaching 511 million euros, thanks to improved traffic and the start-up of operations of the Tepual and Chacalluta airports, both in Chile. The 38% year-on-year growth in construction revenue up to 496 million euros was due to the progress made in major projects such as: Rutas del Litoral (Uruguay), Rutas del Este (Paraguay), Cúcuta-Pamplona, Rumichaca-Pasto and Montes de María (all in Colombia), and Pirámides- Tulancingo and Hospital de Tlahuac (both in Mexico).

Construction division revenue in 2019 amounted to 2,074 million euros, up 21% on the previous year, due to the growth both at international level (+17%) and in the domestic market (+45%). At year-end, 83% of revenue was generated abroad. The growth of this division was thanks to the solid progress made in the execution of the major projects in the backlog, in Colombia, Chile, Mexico, Uruguay, Paraguay, Peru, the United States, the United Kingdom, Spain, etc., and also includes the contribution of the Pedemontana- Veneta motorway project in Italy. The construction backlog stood at 7,134 million euros at 31 December. This was 15% higher than the previous year and 88% of it is based outside Spain. It ensures more than 41 months of activity at the current rate of revenue. Of the entire backlog, around 55% are infrastructure projects for the Sacyr Concessions area.

The Services division's revenue amounted to 1,137 million euros, up 6% on 2018, as a result of a strong performance in all the divisions where it is active: Multiservices, +5%, as a result of the contribution from major contracts awarded, such as that of the operation and maintenance services for the Antofagasta University Hospital (Chile), those related to home care services in various Spanish cities and provinces, and the maintenance of road infrastructure, both in Spain and abroad (Chile, Peru, etc.); Environment, +8%, thanks to the contribution from the contracts for urban waste collection, road cleaning and maintenance of green spaces in many locations in Spain and abroad (such as Bogotá, Colombia) and the commissioning of the waste treatment plant in Melbourne (Australia).

Sacyr Industrial reported revenue of 352 million euros in 2019, 33% down year-on-year, following the completion of large-scale backlog projects. The Oil and Gas division brought in 118 million euros in revenue, down on last year, due to the completion of the projects such as "Nuevo Mundo" and the petrol module at the "La Pampilla" refinery both in Peru; the generation, networks and electrical transportation area achieved revenue of 164 million euros, including the completion of the construction of 3 photovoltaic plants in Ciudad Real (Spain), a wind farm in Lugo (Spain) and the maintenance of electrical infrastructures in Chile and Panama; the Industrial Processing Plants recognised revenue of 24 million euros at 31 December, reflecting the completion of the cement plants in Chimborazo (Ecuador) and Oruro (Bolivia) and the completion of the waste treatment plant in Melbourne (Australia); in turn, the Water division recognised revenue of 44 million euros, reflecting the completion of the Sohar desalination plant in Oman and progress with the drinking water works in Neerabup in Perth, Australia, and the first phase of the Adelaide irrigation plan, also in Australia.

Finally, I believe that we need more value-driven organisations, which is why Sacyr's board of directors focus on how we can make the Group's various businesses and our employees more responsive and adaptable to our social and environmental context. Our aim is to come together to successfully face the sustainability challenges of the future. We have therefore created a Sustainability and Corporate Governance Committee - with powers delegated to it by the Board - and a Sustainability Committee.

Our goal is to reinforce our earlier efforts towards sustainability and partnerships with all our stakeholders in the fight against climate change, promotion of diversity and work-life balance, health and safety, and the positive social impact of our activities.

This year brings new uncertainties and it may seem that there is still a long way to go. However, I am confident that together we can ensure inclusive growth that will enable us to create wealth and reduce inequality in the countries where we operate. The following chapters provide further details on the annual performance of all our areas and businesses that have made these great results possible.

Thank you.

Manuel Manrique Cecilia
Chairman and CEO

“The Group's revenue amounted to 4,169 million euros, up 10% on 2018, which reflects the positive performance of the Company”.

El Chairman and CEO of Sacyr, Manuel Manrique, during the celebration of the Sacyr 2019 Shareholders’ Meeting
SACYR Informe

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