The board of directors met today and made a thorough review of the actions the
Group has put in place to adjust to the Covid-19 context.
SUEZ and all our employees are fully focused on ensuring continuity of service
in all the countries where we operate. Whether we provide drinking water,
wastewater or waste management for municipalities and individuals, or high
quality water supply and treatment and waste management for vital industries,
SUEZ can and will play a key role in ensuring public health protection. While
ensuring the safety of its employees, SUEZ has implemented the necessary
continuity plans in solidarity with governments, public sector and private
sector clients, who have in turn been quick to set up support measures to help
us deliver these vital services.
Turning to the impacts on our business:
* In China, we had already noted the impacts on our hazardous waste
incinerators and on Macao water volumes on February 26th. Given the gradual
return of activity that we continue to see, we confirm that the impacts
specified on February 26th remain valid as of today: 30 to 40mEUR on 2020 EBIT
mainly in Q1 with a progressive return to a normal situation expected in the
* In Europe and Americas, although government actions have been very recent, we
are starting to see the first impacts, for example on volumes and commodity
prices. This is not uniform and there are some geographic areas and also
industrial sectors and clients where activity is normal.
* Even if it is too early to quantify the impact on our former 2020 guidance -
today suspended - and to establish new ones, it is clear to us that, like all
industries, we are likely to be significantly impacted in 2020 by the
consequences of population containment. We are closely monitoring the situation
and will update the market in due time as patterns become clearer.
We have already started to adapt to this outlook. We know that the Group's
transformation plan - Shaping SUEZ 2030 - drives a strong improvement starting
this year in performance and profitability and greater selectivity in
investment, and the plan is well engaged across the Group.
In the current context, in 2020 we have already engaged additional measures to
optimize our activity and mitigate potential impacts on revenue and
profitability, as well as to boost further the Group's liquidity, whilst
ensuring we maintain the best service and safety for our employees and
* Take strong short-term measures to significantly reduce our expenses and
costs, beyond what was originally planned.
* Constrain total investments this year by around 15% compared to 2019 levels
whilst recognising that capex is necessary in some parts of our business to
ensure our service levels.
In this context:
* In line with previous announcements, and given the strength and liquidity of
its balance sheet, SUEZ will propose a 2019 dividend of EUR0.65 a share payable
in May as planned.
* We also confirm that our AGM will be held as planned on Tuesday May 12, 2020
at 2:30 p.m. CET. Due to the Covid-19 epidemic context, and subject to
confirmation of the regulatory texts, it will take place without the physical
presence of shareholders and will be webcasted live on the SUEZ website.
Bertrand Camus, SUEZ CEO, commented:
"At the time the situation is improving in China, the Covid19 pandemic is
spreading all over the world. The entire SUEZ Group is mobilized to keep
operating its essential services in water and waste, which have a direct impact
on health and quality of life of citizens. The Board joins me to thank all the
teams who are focused on a daily basis, with professionalism and calm to
accomplish their mission and further the transformation of our Group."
With 90,000 people on the five continents, SUEZ is a world leader in smart and
sustainable resource management. We provide water and waste management
solutions that enable cities and industries optimize their resource management
and strengthen their environmental and economic performances, in line with
regulatory standards. With the full potential of digital technologies and
innovative solutions, the Group treats over 45 million tons of waste a year,
produces 4.4 million tons of secondary raw materials and 7.7 TWh of local
renewable energy. It also secures water resources, delivering wastewater
treatment services to 66 million people and reusing 1.1 billion m3 of
wastewater. SUEZ generated total revenues of 18 billion euros in 2019.