In 2014 about 7 billion euros EBITDA amounting to around seven billion euro, 61 million customers and 37 million installed smart meters are the numbers of Enel's distribution grids, showing the extent of a diversified global activity that can provide increasingly advanced services through 11 companies and 8 countries around the world, from Europe to Latin America. Significant numbers and performances that have already been achieved and are set to grow and develop in the light of the Group's new 2015-2019 business plan.
Enel's new strategic plan assigns a specific key role to distribution for growth up to 2019, built on the results achieved so far and on the Group's ability to convert investments into global operations that are increasingly adjusted to individual local contexts. The capex, which rose by 17.5 percent between 2013 and 2014, allocates €5,4 billion up to 2019 to grow by achieving development goals whose two major indicators are the amount of new smart meters installed (up to 11 million from the current 37 million) and users (up to 3.6 million from the current 61 million). All the operational areas will be targeted by investments, with Italy and Latin America among the main areas involved in the capex growth. On the other hand, new connections, quality service and smart solutions are the main project scopes for the allocated €5,4 billion.
Efficiency, integration and optimisation are three key words for the path followed by Enel's distribution up to 2019. Up to this date, the Plan foresees a 12 percent opex reduction per end user compared to 2014 and an 11 percent cut of the maintenance capex under the previous 2014-2018 plan. These results will be achieved thanks to grid digitalisation, especially in Europe, work force management systems spread in all the regions where the Group operates and an organisational model that facilitates centralised planning and global procurement management.
Innovation spreads of electric lines and the whole distribution industry is undergoing a deep transformation process. Grid digitalisation and automation is forcing operators to change their business approach and model: some are overwhelmed by the sudden stepping up produced by the development of technology, consumption and renewable energy, while others – like Enel – have long started to follow this trend, and are therefore leading the evolution of electricity distribution and capitalising over time their increasingly advanced expertise and skills.