Repsol held its 2018 Annual General Meeting today in Madrid, during which shareholders approved share buybacks by an amount equivalent to the shares issued in the 2018 scrip dividend. This amortization will result in increased earnings per share for Repsol.
The shareholders also approved an increase of remuneration to 0.9 euros per share. Of this amount, a dividend of 0.4 euros per share has already been paid, and throughout June and July, a capital increase will be executed equivalent to a payment of 0.50 euros gross per share in place of the final dividend for 2017 earnings.
The AGM also voted to keep the scrip dividend program, which allows shareholders to decide whether they prefer to receive part or all of their remuneration in cash or in the form of additional shares in the company.
During the meeting, Repsol chairman Antonio Brufau and CEO Josu Jon Imaz presented the earnings and milestones for 2017, a year in which the company posted its highest net income of the last six years: 2.121 billion euros.
Antonio Brufau discussed the main macroeconomic variables that influenced the sector last year; beginning in June, when international raw material benchmark prices began to recover.
In addition, the chairman emphasized the key challenges for the energy transition in Spain, aimed at avoiding a global temperature increase of more than two degrees Celsius, in accordance with the consensus reached at the Paris Summit (COP21). Brufau explained that in order to meet this goal, the strategy must combine effectiveness with the lowest possible cost to citizens. This will require decisions to be made about the best time to incorporate the available technologies.
In this regard, Repsol’s chairman believes that efficiency is essential to reducing global CO2 emissions. “With technology that is already competitive today CO2 emissions in Spain could be reduced by more than 62 million metric tons by 2030,” he said.
Brufau explained that renewable energy sources are growing increasingly competitive in relation to traditional sources, although they still require support due to their intermittency. This is where gas is positioned as the best firm-capacity option to combat the intermittency of the system and allow for continuous availability as renewable energy grows. Gas accounts for 63% of Repsol’s production and 74% of its reserves.
Repsol’s chief executive officer Josu Jon Imaz highlighted Repsol’s performance in 2017, during which the focus on value creation, added to the flexibility and diversification afforded by business integration, increased the company’s earnings. Repsol’s share price has risen 10% in the year so far, taking the cumulative appreciation over the last two years to 46%. Repsol’s share price has been close to historic highs over the course of the year.
Repsol posted net income of 2.121 billion euros in 2017, 22% more than the 1.736 billion it earned in 2016. In a scenario of low prices for raw materials, the company, supported by the strength of its business and efficiency plans, achieved the highest net income in six years.
Imaz also reviewed the earnings from the first quarter of 2018, in which Repsol posted a net income of 610 million euros and increased its hydrocarbon production to 727,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day, the highest since 2012.
The CEO emphasized the strength of Repsol’s business units, as evidenced by the fact that the company has one of the lowest free cashflow break-even points in the industry, as well as the ability to open new businesses and create greater value than its competitors.
Imaz reviewed Repsol’s achievements, including the company’s fulfillment of its strategic goals ahead of schedule, exceeding expectations in a complex environment. The CEO stressed that Repsol is prepared for the energy transition and explained the general outline for the update of the company’s strategic plan, which will be presented on June 6th.