PPC to introduce leaner and new services without layoffs or price hikes

The transformation of the Public Power Corporation (PPC), Greece’s electricity distributor, includes the withdrawal of lignite plants and voluntary redundancies, as per the updated national energy policy, the President & CEO of PPC, Georgios Stassis, said on Monday.

Stassis clarified that there will be no firings and that the pricing policy will not change, while improved services will “be one more reason for customers to want to stay with PPC.” To that effect the company will launch new commercial packages that will reward new customers with additional services and added value.

In a nutshell, PPC’s strategic planning includes the full or partial shutdown of the lignite plants at Aminteo in 2020, at Kardia in 2021, Megalopoli in 2022 and Agios Dimitrios in 2023. The Ptolemaida unit, now under construction, will be operational in 2022 but will start using alternative, environmentally friendly fuel in 2028 at the latest, said Stassis.

Concerning PPC’s employees, Stassis said these will be reduced to 11,500 in 2024, down from 15,526 in 2018 and 15,300 in 2019. Within the next five years 4,500 workers will exit the company and 800 will be hired. A 60 pct of workers will retire and the remaining 40 pct will be offered retirement incentives, with the agreement of their union GENOP, if they cannot be transferred to other PPC or civil services.
On renewable energy sources, Stassis said the company wants to immediately achieve a target of 1 GigaWatt of RES power output, while a 6 GigaWatt infrastructure is currently on standby for licensing. “PPC missed the train on renewable resources and struggles to catch up with it now. I don’t want the same to happen with electrification.”

PPC’s revenue is now higher than its charges, said Stassis, as some 80,000 customers have set up new debt settlement installment schemes and some 55,000 strategic non-payers have had power cut off.
PPC’s profit of 208 million euros in 2018 is projected to 320-370 million euros in 2019 and to 650-700 million euros in 2020, “as the company is becoming more sustainable,” elaborated Stassis.

Finally, the company’s digitization involves the installation of smart meters and the company’s entry into electrification – with 1,000 charging stations for cars installed throughout Greece over the next 2-3 years and 10,000 charging stations in the medium term.