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Main events

Extraordinary and M&A transactions

On 31 January 2020, the agreement for the sale of some non-core industrial activities between Italgas and A2A signed on 7 October 2019 was finalised. In particular, Italgas Reti sold A2A Calore & Servizi (A2A Group) the entire district heating business managed in the municipality of Cologno Monzese (Milan); at the same time, Unareti (A2A Group) sold Italgas Reti its natural gas distribution business managed in seven municipalities belonging to the Alessandria 4 ATEM.

On 20 February 2020, in compliance with the “Invitation to Submit Expression of Interest”, published on 9 December 2019, as part of the privatisation process launched by the Greek government, the expression of interest in the purchase of 100% of the capital of DEPA Infrastructure was presented. The assets transferred include more than 460 thousand re-delivery points in Greece and around 6400 km of low-pressure networks. On 3 June 2020 the inclusion of Italgas in the short list of subjects admitted to the next phase of the tender for the acquisition was confirmed.

Completed, through the subsidiary Italgas Reti, on 26 May 2020, the acquisition from AEG Soc. Coop. of 15% of the company Reti Distribuzione, which manages the natural Gas distribution service in the territory of 49 municipalities located in Canavese, Valle Orco and Soana and in the Municipality of Saluggia for a total of 32,000 re-delivery points. The consideration for the transaction was €4.6 million.

Anticorruption Certification

For the third consecutive year, Italgas S.p.A. and Italgas Reti S.p.A. achieved the UNI ISO 37001:2016 certification “Anti-bribery management systems”, for Italgas S.p.A. also obtaining the extension of its “anticorruption governance” to all Group companies. The anti-bribery management system, adopted on a voluntary basis, was audited by the independent certification body DNV GL – Business Assurance.

Corporate Governance Code

On 18 October 2020, the Board of Directors voted to comply with the Corporate Governance Code, approved in January 2020 by the Corporate Governance Committee and promoted by Borsa Italiana S.p.A., ABI, Ania, Assogestioni, Assonime and Confindustria, as of 1 January 2021. The company has already adapted most of its procedures to the Recommendations of the new Corporate Governance Code.

Digital transformation

The continuation of the COVID-19 emergency and the considerable additional commitment necessary to guarantee business continuity did not stop the spirit of innovation and the digitisation of processes by the Italgas Group.

In 2020, the new IoT platform was launched for all the Group’s distribution companies, thanks to which the company’s capacity to remote manage not only all new smart meters, but also the new smart components that Italgas is installing along its 71,185 km of network, was strengthened. All data collected from the “field” can today therefore be analysed using big data and analytics instruments that enable further developments to automation and machine learning, so as to guarantee an increasingly high quality, sustainable, efficient, secure service.

The digitisation of the networks has involved the reduction and measurement collection plants (IPRMs) and the Reduction Units (GRFs, GRIs) with the installation of new IoT devices based on the adoption of a new communication standard “Protocol IEC-104 Version for Italgas”: a strategic choice, adopted by all our supplier of the Remote Terminal Units, allowing for the seamless replacement of devices, regardless of make/model.

The Italgas Digital Factory has continued to develop new solutions in support of the digitisation of the network and the management of the end customer. The main innovations of 2020 include: WorkOnSite for the remote supervision of works on site, Smart Tracker for the optimised management of the life cycle of the new meters, the new portal with new self-service functions for customers (both B2B for the sales companies and B2C for end customers) and ClickToGas to digitise and speed up the quotation process for new connections and other customer requests.

Under the scope of the digitisation of people, in 2020 Italgas launched the Mac@Italgas project, thereby becoming the first major company in Italy to have adopted Apple technology on all devices used by the whole of the company population (iPhone, iPad and Mac), thereby creating an ecosystem that is fully integrated and able to ensure ease of use and an approach to the new digital solutions.

Rating and optimization of the debt structure

On 24 June 2020, as part of its EMTN Programme 2019- 2020, Italgas successfully completed the launch of a new bond issue for an amount of €500 million maturing in June 2025, at a fixed rate and with an annual coupon of 0.250%.

The renewal of the EMTN Programme 2020 – launched in 2016 and already renewed in 2017, 2018 and 2019 – was signed on 20 October 2020, at the same time increasing its maximum amount from the previous nominal figure of € 5 billion to a nominal figure of € 6.5 billion.

On 03 December 2020, the rating agencies Moody’s and Fitch confirmed the rating assigned to Italgas S.p.A. as level BAA2 with stable Outlook and BBB+ with stable Outlook, respectively.

Winning of area tenders 1 

On 2 January 2020 Italgas Reti was officially awarded the tender for the concession of the natural Gas distribution service in the territorial area of “Valle d’Aosta”.

On 31 January 2020, the contracting Authority Città Metropolitana di Torino (Metropolitan City of Turin) and the outgoing managers signed a report for the delivery of the plants of the Territorial Area “Turin 2” to Italgas Reti which thus officially launched its first operation of the Gas distribution service for the Territorial Area in Italy.

Lastly, on 3 June 2020 Italgas was officially awarded the tender for the concession of the natural Gas distribution service in the territorial area of “Belluno”. The area is made up of 34 methanised Municipalities, served by about 990 kilometres of networks, for a total of 47 thousand end users.

Cooperative Compliance

On 29 December 2020, Italgas S.p.A. and Italgas Reti S.p.A. were admitted by the Revenue Agency to the cooperative compliance regime, established in order to promote forms of communication and cooperation with the tax Authority, based on mutual trust.

1 For more details, see the paragraph on “Municipal territories under concession and tenders for territorial areas” on page 86.