In recent years, Iberdrola has become an important engine in economic development and job creation. Its huge potential for investment means it makes a key contribution towards economic recovery in the areas where it operates.
To quote the chairman of Iberdrola, Ignacio Galán, "the energy sector is key in overcoming the economic crisis: it invests some €15,000 million per year in Spain, which are allocated towards developing infrastructure that is of the utmost importance for the country's competitiveness. It also generates a significant number of highly qualified jobs - with a total of 400,000 people working in or for the sector - and exerts a strong pull effect on the country's industry, as its purchases from manufacturers and suppliers amount to some €40,000 million a year".
In this context, Iberdrola has characteristically been a major source of employment in all of its business divisions, going from a staff of 10,900 in the year 2000 to 33,000 after only a decade. This does not include the contribution it makes to the industrial fabric in the areas where it operates, the indirect jobs generated and the high volume of purchases from suppliers, as well as its annual revenue contributions.
The group has expanded substantially in recent years, partly as a result of the major process of internationalisation that has been carried out, with positive consequences for several companies and suppliers. In just a decade, Iberdrola has scaled the ranking to become Spain's leading energy group, a multinational company with operations in dozens of countries, one of the world's leading electrical utilities in terms of stock market capitalisation and world leader of the wind energy sector.
Following the international expansion carried out in recent years, the company has managed to diversify its business in the areas that are most liberalised and better positioned for guaranteed economic recovery. This strategy enabled Iberdrola to make a net profit of more than €2,800 million in 2011.
Given the scenario in Spain, which is marked by uncertain regulations, Iberdrola has been focusing on internationalisation as a possibility of growth for over a decade. The foremost exponents of this process were when Iberdrola bought ScottishPower (United Kingdom), Energy East (nowadays Iberdrola USA) and Elektro (Brazil).
Iberdrola's main projects for 2012 include the roll-out of smart grids in Spain. These will be extended to a further eleven areas in 2012 and this operation will call for the replacement of a million meters and the adaptation of 7,000 transformer stations.
As regards the United Kingdom, the company will be focusing on the construction of the first underwater pipeline between Scotland and England, which will measure 420 metres long; the completion of the extension to Whitelee wind farm complex (which is set to become the largest terrestrial wind farm in Europe), and the start of construction work for the West of Duddon Sands marine wind farm, which will have a capacity of 400 MW.
In the United States, Iberdrola will continue the construction of the 800 kilometre long high voltage power line in Maine and also complete the roll-out of smart grids in this state. As for Brazil, the company is completing works at various hydroelectric projects and setting up several wind farms.
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