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Repsol cuts its profit by 13% as of March, to 969 million, but increases its investments

MADRID, 25 (EUROPA PRESS).

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Repsol cuts its profit by 13% as of March, to 969 million, but increases its investments

MADRID, 25 (EUROPA PRESS)

Repsol obtained a net profit of 969 million euros in the first quarter of the year, which represents a drop of 12.9% compared to the 1,112 million euros it registered in the same period of the previous year, due to the drop in the prices of hydrocarbons, especially natural gas, the company reported.

Specifically, the price of Henry Hub gas worsened in the quarter for the group to 2.3 dollars/MBtu, compared to 3.4 dollars in the period from January to March 2023, while the price of crude oil stood at 83.2 dollars/barrel, 2.5% higher than a year ago.

Meanwhile, the refining margin improved significantly between January and March to 11.4 dollars per barrel, compared to 9 dollars/barrel in the last quarter of last year, although this figure was clearly lower (-26.9%) than the same period of 2024.

Likewise, these results include the first of the tranches corresponding to the extraordinary tax for this year that the Government set for 2023 and 2024 for energy companies corresponding to 1.2% of sales. Last year Repsol already paid almost 450 million euros for this concept.

Thus, the group's adjusted net result, which specifically measures the progress of the business, reached 1,267 million euros in this first quarter of the year, 33% lower than the 1,891 million euros in the same period last year.

The gross operating result (Ebitda) stood at 2,143 million euros at the end of March, with a drop of 20.5% compared to a year ago.

The CEO of the energy company, Josu Jon Imaz, considered that this beginning of the year "demonstrates the solidity of Repsol's project, which will take a new step forward thanks to the 2024-2027 strategic update."

Likewise, he highlighted that the company continues to evolve its businesses, "with a multi-energy offer unique in Spain, advancing with tangible facts in decarbonization and investing profitably to guarantee the future of the industry and employment."

In this first quarter of 2024, the boost in energy investments stood out, with 2,129 million euros. Of these, more than half were allocated to growth in renewables - some 1,180 million euros. In the period 2024-2027, the company plans to invest between 16,000 and 19,000 million euros net: 60% dedicated to the Iberian Peninsula and more than 35% to low-carbon projects.

At the beginning of 2024, Repsol noted that it has taken "decisive steps to deepen the decarbonization of its businesses", thus highlighting the start of large-scale production of renewable fuels at its new plant in Cartagena, in which investments have been made. 250 million euros and has a production capacity of 250,000 tons per year.

In addition, at the end of March it announced a strategic alliance with Bunge to increase the supply of raw materials to produce renewable fuels. He also agreed to acquire 40% of biogas plant developer Genia Bionergy.

In renewables in the United States, the company closed the purchase of the renewable energy developer ConnectGen and completed the construction of its largest photovoltaic plant to date, Frye Solar, with a total installed capacity of 637 megawatts (MW) and 600 MW already in operation .

IT RAISES ITS NET DEBT TO 3,901 MILLION.

The group's net debt rose to 3,901 million euros at the end of March, 1,805 million euros above what it was at the end of 2023, mainly due to the increase in working capital, greater organic and inorganic investments, including the acquisition of ConnectGen and the payment of dividends in January.

The leverage ratio of the energy group at the end of the first quarter stood at 11.5%, compared to 6.7% at the end of 2023.

Meanwhile, Repsol's liquidity at the end of March was 10,332 million euros - including undrawn committed credit lines - which represents 2.85 times the short-term gross debt maturities.

The cash flow from operations during the first quarter of Repsol amounted to 1,362 million euros, 465 million euros lower than the same period in 2023. Excluding working capital, the cash flow from operations during the quarter was superior to organic investments, dividends, share buybacks and interest.

By business areas, Exploration and Production had an adjusted result of 442 million euros, slightly lower than the same period last year.

For its part, the Industrial business saw its result reach 731 million euros, decreasing compared to the equivalent quarter of 2023, in which the refining margin index reached unusually high levels.

DIVIDENDS.

Regarding the remuneration of its shareholders, one of the levers in its strategic update, the oil company distributed a cash dividend of 0.40 gross euros per share last January.

Likewise, in March it began a repurchase program of a maximum of 35 million of its own shares and will propose at its next meeting - which will take place on May 10 - to its shareholders, the approval of a capital reduction of 40 million shares, through the amortization of own shares, which is expected to be executed before the end of July.

In its 2024-2027 'roadmap', Repsol plans to allocate between 25% and 35% of cash flow from operations to remunerate its shareholders, including dividends and share buybacks. The company could distribute up to a maximum of 10,000 million euros among its approximately half a million shareholders, largely small savers in Spain.

Likewise, it has announced for this year an increase of approximately 30% in the cash dividend, up to 0.9 euros per share. This would mean the distribution of nearly 1,095 million euros. For the next three years, the commitment is to increase this total amount by 3% annually, up to 1,197 million euros in 2027. With this, Repsol will distribute 4,600 million euros in cash in the period 2024-2027.

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Repsol