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 hydroelectric 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 (2011-2017)

    Context

    • The future of the energy sector requires significant investments in order to guarantee 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.
    • In 2016, Iberdrola was consolidated as the 'energy company of the future' as a result of its leadership in clean energy — Iberdrola is the first renewable energy producer out of the European utilities and a global leader in installed onshore wind power —, the deployment of smart networks, the development of innovative products and services for its customers and its energy storage capacity (4.5 GW).
    • Currently, offshore wind power is one of the keys to the future of the company. The UK, Germany, France and the USA have been chosen as the countries in which the company will develop and expand its activities in this area over the next few years.

    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 power plant in Spain.
    • 2015.- Start-up of the Black Law wind farm extension in the United Kingdom.
    • 2015.- Closure of the Longannet coal-fired plant in the United Kingdom.
    • 2015.- Start-up of the Pier II (66 MW) and Dos Arbolitos wind farms (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.
    • 2015.- Iberdrola starts to collaborate with the AECC in awareness-raising activities and collecting funds for research.
    • 2015.- Iberdrola is granted the contract for an 850 MW combined cycle plant in Northeast Mexico.
    • 2015.- Iberdrola secures financing for €325M from the European Investment Bank (EIB) for investments in Spain.
    • 2015.- Iberdrola and BMW launch a corporate electric 'car sharing' service.
    • 2015.- Iberdrola and Neoenergia grant a contract to Gamesa for the supply of 84 MW in Brazil.
    • 2016.- Iberdrola, the only Spanish company amongst the 100 most sustainable in the world.
    • 2016.- Iberdrola signs a shareholder agreement with Siemens and will own an 8.1% share in Gamesa, as a result of the merger with Siemens Wind Power.
    • 2016.- Iberdrola has commissioned the Calangas wind energy complex in Brazil, the largest wind energy complex in South America.
    • 2016.- Navantia and Iberdrola at the delivery ceremony for the first Wikinger offshore wind farm jackets, a project with an investment of approximately €1,400M.
    • 2016.- Iberdrola's commitment to promoting women's sports in Spain.
    • 2016.- Iberdrola has already installed over eight million smart meters in Spain, thanks to the progress of the STAR project.
    • 2016.- Iberdrola launches the Sustainable Mobility Plan with the goal of contributing to a rational use of means of transport.
    • 2016.- Iberdrola achieves its best ever quality of supply.
    • 2016.- Iberdrola commissions the hydroelectric power plant of Teles Pires (Brazil).
    • 2016.- Iberdrola celebrates the tenth anniversary of the Corporate Volunteerism Program.
    • 2016.- Over 300,000 homes have hired the personalised rates offered by Iberdrola, achieving a mean 10% saving in their electricity bill.
    • 2016.- Iberdrola inaugurates the Dulces Nombres II power plant in Monterrey (Mexico).
    • 2017.- Iberdrola builds the tunnel of the Daivões hydroelectric power plant, the first milestone of its Tâmega hydroelectric project (Portugal).
    • 2017.- Iberdrola becomes the only Spanish company amongst the 100 most sustainable in the world.
    • 2017.- Ignacio Galán stands up for the decarbonisation of the economy in Davos, in a scenario in which global demand is rising.
    • 2017.- Installation of the first wind turbine in the Wikinger offshore wind farm (Germany).
    • 2017.- Iberdrola has won the tender to supply up to 1,500 MW of offshore wind power capacity in the United States, its first project in North America with this technology.
    • 2017.- The company is the successful bidder in a tender for the construction and operation of a combined cycle power plant (766 MW) in the State of Sinaloa (Mexico).
    • 2017.- Inauguration of the 'Memory regained. Traces in the History of the United States', exhibited at the Iberdrola Tower building.
    • 2017.- Protection of 100% of its customers in Spain against an interruption in the supply of electricity.
    • 2017.- Iberdrola to build a wind farm for Apple.
    • 2017.- The company has already installed 90% of the smart meters in Spain.
    • 2017.- Neoenergia acquires the businesses of Elektro to create a leading electric utility in Brazil and Latin America.