Market leaders in the multi-utility industry, we are the foremost Italian operator in the water services sector and one of the main national operators in waste management and the distribution and sale of electricity. We also recently entered the the gas distribution sector.
A widely regulated business. We are the Italian multi-utility with the highest percentage of regulated business: approximately 81% of our 2019 EBITDA came from the regulated sector and we aim to achieve a 38% growth in EBITDA during the time frame of the 2020-2024 business plan.
Ample growth prospects. We are the only benchmark multi-utility operator in the centre-south of Italy. Our territorial location allows us to rely on a unique pool of growth opportunities, in terms of both number of residents and local development needs.
An industrial company that focuses on infrastructural investments and sustainability. The 2020-2024 plan places a firm emphasis on our industrial and sustainable core, paying close attention to infrastructures, technological innovation and responsible development, also with a view to enhancing the growth of the territories where we operate. We expect to invest 4.7 billion Euro during the plan time frame, of which 4.3 billion Euro industry-related capex, including more than 80% in regulated business. A major drive is derived from innovation, where investments totalling 615 million Euro are anticipated in digitisation projects and the creation of systems for the intelligent management of networks and services.
Constant focus on sustainability. In the new horizon 2024 business plan, sustainability has come to represent a structural element that guides the Group’s business decisions and operations management. In the plan, investments totalling 2.1 billion Euro (+400 million compared to the previous Plan) are associated with specific sustainability targets, including the protection and management of water resources and the reduction of leaks, the development of electric mobility, the circular economy and the fight against climate change. We estimate that these investments will have a positive impact on Italian GDP for approximately 6 billion Euro, directly or indirectly generating employment for over 21 thousand people.
Growth in dividends. Our 2020-2024 business plan envisages the distribution of 860 million Euro over the plan period, reflecting an increase of 60 million Euro compared to the previous plan, with a minimum dividend of 0.80 Euro per share in 2021.
Cost-of-debt reduction policy. As at 30 September 2020, 82% of all debt carries a fixed rate. The average duration of medium/long-term debt as at 30 September 2020 is 5.6 years. The average cost of debt went from 2.15% at 31 December 2019 to 1.8% in September 2020.
Data as at 31 December 2019