The Energy Transition (Progress) Act (Wet Voortgang Energietransitie, Wet VET) came into force on 1 July 2018. The Act aims to facilitate the progress of the energy transition. An important part of the Act is clarifying and more sharply defining the tasks that grid managers and grid operators (such as Stedin Group) may carry out.
With the transitional period for certain provisions in the Act expiring, the Energy Transition (Progress) Act entered fully into force on 1 January 2020. Stedin Group's focus on good grid management and caution in respect of non-regulated activities is in line with the aim of the Act.
By law, regulated activities for gas and electricity may not be carried out under the same banner as other energy infrastructures (such as steam, biogas, CO2 and heat). These activities were consequently transferred in 2019 to a separate brand within Stedin Group: NetVerder. NetVerder promotes the energy transition by supporting the development, construction and maintenance of energy infrastructures for heat, steam and biogas. NetVerder also focuses on the independent transport and distribution of other new energy sources and carriers. NetVerder is an independent part of Stedin Group. NetVerder has six employees. This figure includes 5 internal employees (male: 5; female: 0), and 1 external employee (male: 1; female: 0).
Within DNWG Group, DNWG Infra is the service provider that builds and maintains the electricity and gas grids in the province of Zeeland, on behalf of Enduris. In addition, DNWG Infra maintains and manages the grids entrusted to it by other grid managers (e.g. Evides Waterbedrijf, Stedin and TenneT) and by industrial customers. DNWG Infra also supplies services in the area of metering technology in Zeeland and elsewhere and is an approved party responsible for metering.
We form joint ventures with other parties for specific activities.
Utility Connect B.V. is a joint venture with network group Alliander. The company operates its own wireless telecommunications network, which is used to read out measurement data provided by smart meters and to communicate with smart grid applications. This network allows us to shorten or prevent energy supply disruptions.
TensZ B.V. is the joint organisation of TenneT and Stedin for managing and maintaining high-voltage grids. Each party holds a 50% share.
TeslaN B.V. is the joint service provider for the management and maintenance of the high-voltage grids of TenneT and Enduris. Each party holds a 50% share.
ZEBRA Gasnetwerk B.V. manages and operates a high-pressure gas transport pipeline. This pipeline is used to transport high-calorific gas that is taken in from the gas distribution network of Fluxys in the import station in Sas van Gent. The gas is transported to connected high-volume consumers.
On 19 December 2019, an asset sale and purchase agreement was signed between Enduris B.V., Enexis Netbeheer B.V., Zebra Activa B.V., Entrade Pipe B.V. and Gasunie Transport Services B.V. Among other things, the transaction provided for the transfer of the assets of the extra-high-pressure gas grids to Gasunie Transport Services B.V. in 2020.
Stichting Zeeuwse Publieke Belangen (Zeeland Public Interest Foundation)
Stichting Zeeuwse Publieke Belangen is a unique alliance between the province of Zeeland, the municipalities of Zeeland and Stedin Group. The foundation was established to safeguard the arrangements concerning the sale of DNWG/Enduris to Stedin Group in areas including employment, energy supply and the energy transition. The foundation makes a budget available to promote the energy transition in Zeeland. An overview of the initiatives can be found on the foundation's website.
'We', 'the company', 'the network group', 'Stedin Group' or similar terms or expressions are used in this report to refer to Stedin Holding N.V. and its subsidiaries (including Stedin Netbeheer B.V., NetVerder B.V. and DNWG Groep N.V.). The term 'Stedin' refers to Stedin Netbeheer B.V. and its subsidiaries. 'DNWG' or 'DNWG Group' refers to DNWG Groep N.V. and its subsidiaries, including Enduris B.V. and DNWG Infra B.V.
Samen Sterker – Stedin and DNWG to become a single organisation in 2022
Stedin and DNWG will merge on 1 January 2022. From that date, they will jointly carry out staff services and grid management activities under a single name: Stedin. The name 'Enduris' will cease to exist from that date. The operational organisation will continue to be structured on a regional basis. The Samen Sterker (Stronger Together) programme is assisting both parties in transitioning to a single organisation.
Steps undertaken in 2020.
In 2020, a detailed analysis was made of departments that are responsible for grid management activities and the operational organisation. We also launched integration themes in relation to HR, Regulatory and Legal Affairs, ICT and Communication. Questions that arise in this context are what effect the integration will have on employment terms and conditions and how we intend to ensure that all contracts and proprietary assets will transfer seamlessly to Stedin. Stedin's systems form the basis for all aspects of the integration, and we naturally assure the quality of services to customers in Zeeland.
A survey among employees of DNWG showed that there is sufficient support for the integration. It is natural for employees to want to know where they stand. Mobility interviews and information sessions about employment terms and conditions were therefore held to address any issues. In terms of the synergy benefits, there are some departments, such as ICT, where, for various reasons, the implementation measures will continue after 1 January 2022. It remains our ambition to grasp most of the synergy opportunities before this date and to designate alternatives, where necessary.
The integration should generate financial gains in excess of €100 million over a period of 8 to 10 years. The total financial benefit in 2019 and 2020 in this regard was €10.2 million. We achieve these synergy gains by:
Integration: 1 January 2022
The implementation of the organisation model from 1 January 2022 is a gradual process. It will be accompanied by a transfer of DNWG employees to Stedin Group, with all their rights and obligations. To facilitate this process, a staff transfer protocol has been drawn up that ensures equivalent and uniform employment terms and conditions for all current and future Stedin employees from 1 January 2022. As part of a careful integration process, we are focused on the mobility of colleagues and on safeguarding jobs as far as possible.
In Zeeland, we have coordinated activities below ground with partners for approximately 15 years. DNWG Infra, for example, carries out work below ground for water company Evides. DNWG's integration into Stedin Group means that it is no longer possible to extend the present contracts and working arrangements. Stedin Group is keen to further develop multidisciplinary ways of working in Zeeland and the rest of its area of operations. The current services agreement (between Evides as the client, on the one hand, and DNWG as the contactor, on the other) was replaced with effect from 1 January 2021 by a cooperation agreement, under which both partners work together on an equal footing. This agreement was signed on 7 December 2020.
Crucial craftsmanship: Raymond Kloos
Raymond Kloos is a service & maintenance engineer. What does 'crucial craftsmanship' mean for him? 'An employer that gives you confidence: you are professionally competent, you've got the PPE, you can do it.'
>What makes your work of vital importance? In other words, why is your work important for society?
‘Connections occasionally break, due to wear and tear or excavation activities. It's my job to remedy the failure as quickly and effectively as possible. I also carry out maintenance on medium-voltage switchgear. My work is important, because society simply does not function without electricity. People are used to power being available 24/7, so when an outage means they cannot use their vacuum cleaner, or the oxygen pump for their saltwater aquarium has stopped working, I can't tell you how pleased they are to see me!'
>How do you recognise a professional in your field?
>What has working been like for you during the lockdown? What was different from normal?
'Our department is vitally important, and failures always have to be fixed, so my work continued as usual. Providing our children aged 8 and 11 with home-schooling was a challenge. I was given extra days off to help out with their education. I was also the first Stedin employee to enter the home of someone who had been infected with the coronavirus. I was on the emergency repair shift and got a call at 11 o'clock one evening. My first thought was: I'm not going! But my boss said: you are professionally competent, you've got the PPE, you can do it. I soon regretted wearing a warm jumper under the full PPE kit, though. Obviously I couldn't take it off, but it was okay in the end.
>How do you ensure that you remain fit and healthy yourself?
>What gives you the most satisfaction in your work? In other words, how does your work help you maintain vitality?
'We are a close-knit team of 30 professionals with whom you can discuss whatever is on your mind. Stedin is generally very concerned with the well-being of its employees. We look after each other, making sure that we take timely breaks on warm or cold days and that there is enough variety in our work. It is nice to have that kind of support. And I get plenty of fresh air in my job, which I love.'