EDP CEO António Mexia and the head of the utility’s renewables unit João Manso Neto have resigned amid a corruption investigation.
The utility yesterday (30 November) informed the Portuguese stock market regulator CMVM that suspended CEOs Mexia and Neto will no longer sit on the company’s board.
Shareholders have indicated that, in the light of Mexia’s court-ordered suspension from executive functions in July, a new board will be required in order “to maintain the stability of the company and its affairs and to convey a strong message to the market that EDP’s strategy and focused growth remain unaltered”.
Acting CEO Miguel Stilwell has been asked to present a slate of candidates.
Mexia and Manso Neto were suspended on the orders of judge Carlos Alexandre who is investigating alleged favours exchanged between EDP and Manuel Pinho, Portuguese economy minister between 2005 and 2009, which allegedly resulted in illicit profits for EDP.
In a letter to the EDP board, Mexia said yesterday that the criminal investigation that began in 2012 is “based on insinuations and suspicions without any grounding in facts”.
He wrote: “All our actions over the years have sought to protect the interests of EDP and have been in strict compliance with our legal duties and obligations to our stakeholders and to the Portuguese state at the time when it was our principal shareholder.”
EDP and EDPR’s market valuations have increased by 60% and over 100% respectively since the last update of the group’s strategic plan in March 2019, he noted.