OUR HISTORY

A multinational with over 170 years of existence

THE HALLMARK OF THE GROUP IS ITS STEADY GROWTH AND ITS FORWARD VISION TO PREPARE FOR SOCIETY'S FUTURE ENERGY NEEDS

Hard work, talent, commitment and enthusiasm have always been the life force driving Iberdrola's history, a Group that is now firmly established on both sides of the Atlantic. The company is today the number one European electricity company in terms of market capitalisation, and a world leader in renewable energy. This position is built on sound values, a merger process which has successfully integrated different cultures, and the capacity to look one step ahead to society's coming energy needs and offer solutions that safeguard the environment for future generations. This is our story.

EXPERIENCE, RECOGNITION AND SOLIDITY

  • The beginning (1840-1935)

    Context

    • Europe was undergoing a process of change that eventually led to the Second Industrial Revolution.
    • Water resources that could be used as energy sources acquired great importance.
    • Many cities in the United States saw a boom in companies providing lighting for homes and streets using gas as an energy source. These were the cornerstones of Energy East on the east coast.
    • In Spain, Hidroeléctrica Ibérica was set up at a time of maximum energy need, and inspired by the future vision of its founders, who were fully engaged with the society of their time.

    Some of the main milestones of the Iberdrola Group

    • 1840.-  The Hartford City Light Company is set up in the USA (the origin of Iberdrola USA, today Avangrid).
    • 1901.-  Establishment of Hidroeléctrica Ibérica in Spain, which will become part of Iberdrola.
    • 1907.-  Constitution of another of the cornerstones of the company: Hidroeléctrica Española.
    • 1918.-  Establishment of Saltos del Duero, a pioneer in the development of R+D projects.
    • 1935.-  Inauguration of the Ricobayo dam, Spain's first large-scale hydroelectric operation.
  • A complex historical period (1944-1955)

    Context

    • The outbreak of the First World War forced the sector to seek new sources of energy and to set up vast distribution networks.

    • American electricity companies began to amalgamate as a way of overcoming the uncertainty caused by the changing economic and financial situation. The stock market crash of 1929 nearly drove these fledgling groups to the wall.
    • In Spain the Civil War called an abrupt halt to development, destroyed facilities and seriously interfered with the maintenance of the scarce equipment that remained.
    • Outbreak of World War II.
    • Spain underwent a period of international isolation in the 1940s and had considerable difficulty acquiring technology and materials.

    Some of the main milestones of the Iberdrola Group

    • 1944.-  Foundation of Saltos del Duero Hidroeléctrica Ibérica. Establishment of Iberduero.
    • 1945.-  Work started on the Saltos del Sil hydroelectric plant
    • 1955.-  Establishment of the South of Scotland Electricity Board, the first seed of ScottishPower.
  • Towards deregulation (1965-1989)

    Context

    • In the 1960s the boom in nuclear energy marked another step forward for the companies that would eventually comprise the Iberdrola Group.

    • The 1970s were marked by the search for new energy sources, mergers, and a huge surge in demand and output.
    • During the oil crisis the electricity sector played a key role in the recovery
    • The process of privatisation began in the electricity sector, and was the first step on the path towards the definitive deregulation of the business

    Some of the main milestones of the Iberdrola Group

    • 1965.-  The Cruachan hydroelectric plant comes on line (Scotland).
    • 1971.-  Start of operations at the Santa María de Garoña nuclear power plant.
    • 1981.-  Beginning of commercial operations in the first group at the Almaraz nuclear power plant (Cáceres), the first Spanish second-generation nuclear facility.
    • 1989.- Start-up of the La Muela hydropower plant (Spain).

LOOKING AHEAD TO WORLDWIDE ENERGY TRANSFORMATION

  • The basis of internationalisation (1990-2005)

    Context

    • The big electricity companies were starting to operate like genuine multinationals.

    • This was the period when the businesses were restructured, and basically divided into Generation, Distribution and Sales.

    Algunos de los principales hitos del Grupo Iberdrola

    • 1990.- Constitution of ScottishPower, a benchmark for the sector in the United Kingdom.
    • 1992.- Merger of Iberduero and Hidroeléctrica Española. The birth of Iberdrola.
    • 1992.- The Carland Cross windfarm starts operations in Scotland.
    • 1994.- Iberdrola Ingeniería y Construcción starts operations.
    • 1995.- First expansion of Iberdrola into the Latin American market.
    • 1996.- Iberdrola embarks on its first electric car project.
    • 1997.- ScottishPower listed on the New York Stock Exchange.
    • 1998.- Creation of Energy East after the merger of six companies in the USA.
    • 2001.- Iberdrola launches its Strategic Internationalisation Plan and announces its corporate vision of a world whose increasing energy needs will require cleaner and more sustainable sources.
    • 2005.- Start of operations at the Maranchón windfarm, the largest in Spain at that time.
  • Leaders in clean energy (2006-2010)

    Context

    • The company decided not to follow the general trend of diversifying its business and investment in sectors such as telecommunications, but to focus on the energy sector, where they invested in generation and grids in Spain, Mexico and Brazil. This made it well-placed to prepare for the surge in demand of subsequent years.

    • Iberdrola opted to make a significant investment in wind power, a business which was then underestimated and even overlooked by competitors, but was on the verge of taking off thanks to the Kyoto Protocol and the European directives that followed.
    • Iberdrola's corporate vision outlined in 2001 continued to be one step ahead of the trends in the sector, when they predicted that the surge in world energy demand could only be satisfied by clean and sustainable energy sources. 
    • In 2007 Iberdrola embarked on a major international expansion and increased its presence in the United Kingdom and the United States.

    Some of the main milestones of the Iberdrola Group

    • 2006.- Ignacio Galán is appointed the new Chairman of Iberdrola.
    • 2007.- Completion of the merger between Iberdrola and ScottishPower.
    • 2007.- Iberdrola Renovables is listed on the stock exchange.
    • 2008.- Completion of the merger between Iberdrola and Energy East.
    • 2009.- The Group attains a capacity of almost 45,000 MW.
    • 2009.- Whitelee, the largest windfarm in Europe, opens in Scotland.
    • 2009.- The first CO2 storage plant begins operations in Longannet .
    • 2009.- Iberdrola undertakes to reduce its emissions below the sector average in Europe.
    • 2010.- Completion of the merger between Iberdrola and Iberdrola Renovables.
  • Sustainable long-term growth (2011-2015)

    Context

    The future of the energy sector requires a significant investments in order to guarantee the security of the supply, competitiveness and sustainability, and to satisfy the worldwide demand for electricity, which is expected to outstrip that of any other form of final energy.

    Some of the main milestones of the Iberdrola Group

    • 2011- Completion of the merger with Elektro.
    • 2011.- Start of the work to deploy smart grids in ten geographic areas in Spain, an important step forward in the STAR project after the successful conclusion of the pilot trial in the city of Castellón.
    • 2011.- Start of operations of the Dardanelos hydroelectric plant and the Narandiba substation in Brazil.
    • 2012.-Completion of the extension of the Whitelee windfarm in the United Kingdom, with 539 MW, one of the largest onshore windfarms in Europe.
    • 2012.- Successful installation of the 625,000 smart meters scheduled in the AMI project for the implementation of a new advanced measuring and reading system in the State of Maine (USA).
    • 2012.- Start-up of the La Venta III windfarm in Mexico.
    • 2013.- Start of the extension of the Santo Estevo hydroelectric plant in Spain.
    • 2014.- Start of operations at the La Muela II pumped storage hydroelectric facility, with 850 MW, which together with La Muela I constitutes the largest complex of its kind in Europe, with almost 1,500 MW.
    • 2014.- Completion of Iberdrola's first offshore windfarm in the Irish Sea (United Kingdom), West of Duddon Sands, with 389 MW of power.
    • 2014.- Completion in Maine of the installation of the high-voltage transmission line connecting the United States and Canada.
    • 2014.- Completion of the construction of the Baffin windfarm (202 MW) in the United States.
    • 2015.- Start-up of the extension of the San Pedro II hydroelectric plant in Spain.
    • 2015.- Start-up of the Black Law windfarm extension in the United Kingdom.
    • 2015.- Closure of the Longannet coal-fired plant in the United Kingdom.
    • 2015.- Start-up of the Pier II windfarm in Puebla, with 66 MW, and the Dos Arbolitos windfarm, with 70 MW, both in Mexico.
    • 2015.- Completion of the construction of the Teles Pires hydroelectric plant with a total of 1,820 MW, of which 362 MW correspond to Iberdrola through its share in Neoenergia.
    • 2015.- Avangrid is created from the amicable merger between Iberdrola USA and UIL Holdings Corporation, and is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.