Letter from Ginés Clemente, Aciturri's Chief Executive Officer
Thank you for taking the time to learn about Aciturri’s activity in 2020, which was undoubtedly the hardest year for our company since it was founded 44 years ago. With the purpose of sharing details about the social, economic and environmental impact of our activity with our stakeholders, we drafted this document based on the guidelines of Law 11/2018, aimed at amending the requirements regarding non-financial information, and following the guidelines of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI). In 2020, we renewed one more time our commitment to the United Nations Global Compact as signatory partners.
Last year, all of us were exposed to the cruel reality of a pandemic. Some of us contracted the disease, some experienced it through people we were very close to. And in many cases, we lost someone from our family or a friend. I want the first words of this letter to convey to you my most sincere support in these tragic circumstances. I must also express my gratitude to all the people on Aciturri’s team who, in times of greatest need, left their families to come to our plants and manufacture thousands of gowns, face shields, and other PPE needed by health care professionals and other key workers during the first few weeks of this nightmare. I am deeply proud of your generosity and I will not tire of thanking you for this touching gesture.
The decrease in air traffic in 2020, with a 65.9% drop in air travel demand from 2019 according to data provided by IATA, is forcing us to face the worst crisis in the history of the aviation industry. In our company, both the aerostructures and the engine divisions experienced a decrease of approximately 50% in workload levels and a similar impact on sales volume. Despite COVID 19, we managed to address the situations we had to face, in some cases by making difficult and very painful decisions, but always assuming our responsibility and with the full conviction that they were adequate to ensure the viability of the activity.
At the same time, we were convinced of the sustainability of our project, so we went ahead with the most important investments in new equipment and facilities, and worked to increase capacities and improve competences, always focusing on maintaining a level of competitiveness that will satisfy new market demands as the recovery occurs. The level of uncertainty remains very high for the foreseeable future. The most optimistic estimates put the market recovery to pre-pandemic levels in 2024-2025. The journey to get there will be neither short nor easy, and we cannot rule out further sacrifices from the companies in the sector. In order to make this journey, we have a new Board of Directors. We welcomed professionals from different fields, all of them with an important background in the development of industrial projects. Likewise, we entrusted the management to a new management team that, led by Álvaro Fernández Baragaño, is already working to achieve the goals set out in the 2021-2024 Feasibility Plan.
These decisions, together with the trust from our financial suppliers and the company’s shareholders, help us face the future by working more than ever, with the tremendous excitement and determination that have brought us all the way here.