The event was held at the Higher Council for Sport's High Performance Centre to celebrate the first anniversary of the agreement


Iberdrola renews its support for Women’s Universe, the programme promoting women’s sport

  • The chairman of the CSD, José Ramón Lete, and Iberdrola chairman, Ignacio Galán, signed the extension of this cooperation this morning 
  • The company will sponsor another five federations – table tennis, athletics, karate, boxing and ice sports – in addition to the ten currently sponsored: football, handball, rugby, gymnastics, triathlon, swimming, canoeing, badminton, volleyball and hockey

In Madrid today the chairman of the Higher Council for Sports (Consejo Superior de Deportes, CSD) José Ramón Lete, and Iberdrola's chairman, Ignacio Galán, renewed the agreement under which the company has become the main sponsor of Women's Universe, the programme that seeks to promote and encourage women’s sport. The signing took place at the CSD’s High Performance Centre (CAR).

Women's Universe is a CSD programme that aims to promote and develop women’s sport as a way to recognise the important role played by women in sport in particular and society in general.

During his speech, Ignacio Galán recalled the successes reaped by Spanish sportswomen in recent months, such as the six medals at the World Swimming Championships in Budapest, the other six medals won in various gymnastic disciplines and the continuing position of Spanish badminton as world leader. 

“But sport is not only about triumphs and big championships,” added the Iberdrola chairman. “Above all else, it is perseverance, sacrifice and the will to succeed. Thousands and thousands of anonymous sportswomen demonstrate this every day. It is this exemplary attitude that we want to promote.”

José Ramón Lete emphasised and thanked Iberdrola for its real commitment to women’s sport and a healthier, more equal and fairer society. “We still have a long way to go and for this we need a travelling companion like Iberdrola,” he said.

Lete also noted that “sport and its protagonists are essential promoters of our country’s brand,” and unveiled the latest data from the Elcano Royal Institute's Image of Spain Barometer. “Spanish sportsmen and women are the third most highly rated element, after our attractiveness as a tourist destination and our cuisine; seven out of every ten foreigners interviewed placed you as one of our most distinctive characteristics.

“You sportswomen defy stereotypes, break thorugh boundaries and ceilings, and you become an inspiration and a model to follow, offering leadership abilities to women and girls,” he said.


Iberdrola’s support for women

It is now a year since Iberdrola joined the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport’s Women's Universe programme and the company is expanding its support to include another five women’s federations: athletics, karate, boxing, table tennis and ice sports.

These join the 10 that are already supported by the group: gymnastics, triathlon, swimming, rugby, canoeing, badminton, football, handball, volleyball and hockey.

Iberdrola is therefore reaffirming its support for sportswomen through Women’s Universe: both by supporting the national teams and sports clubs through their leagues as well as by supporting individual players, with the launch of the new scholarship programme.

There are already 17,500 federation members who are benefiting from this agreement and it is hoped that its renewal will bring this number to over 20,000.

Attending this morning’s event, in addition to Ignacio Galán and José Ramón Lete, were the secretary of the Iberdrola board of directors, Julián Martínez-Simancas; the CSD’s director general for Sports, Jaime González Castaño, the deputy general director of Women’s Universe, Susana Pérez Amor, and the director of the Youth Sport Foundation, Alfonso Jiménez Prado. They were accompanied by Women’s Universe sportswomen and ambassadors Jennifer Pareja, Eli Pinedo, Patricia García and Sandra Sánchez.

As stated in its Equal Opportunities and Balance Policy, which has been approved by the board of directors, Iberdrola considers that equality between men and women is one of the company’s essential values.

As Ignacio Galán noted today, in 2016 five times more women joined the group than two years ago.

In addition, the number of women on Iberdrola's board of directors is double the average among large Spanish companies. Out of the 14 members of Iberdrola’s top management body five are women: Inés Macho, Mª Helena Antolín, Samantha Barber, Georgina Kessel and Denise Mary Holt.

In addition, all the Board’s committees – Auditing and Risk Supervision, Appointments, Remuneration and Corporate Social Responsibility – are chaired by one of them and the lead director is a woman: Inés Macho.

Iberdrola also has a firm commitment to balancing personal and work life. In 2007 the company became the first on the Ibex 35 to implement continuous all year round working, an initiative that has been joined by 70 other practices, including, for example, the flexible reduction of workdays to five hours per day until the employee's child reaches the age of one, with no reduction in the fixed salary, and the increase to 45 minutes for the reduction in the workday when breastfeeding.