Finnish Fortum's comparable earnings before interest taxes (EBITDA) increased by 19 percent to €1.52 billion in 2018 compared to the previous year, the company announced on Friday.
Fortum said its comparable operating profit also increased by 22 percent to €987 million in 2018 from €811 million in 2017.
"2018 was an eventful year for Fortum. We continued our strategy implementation with the integration and development of our acquisitions, further investments in renewables," said Pekka Lundmark, CEO of the company.
"Our first strategic priority is to pursue operational excellence and increased flexibility in order to ensure benchmark performance of our existing businesses and improve our long-term competitiveness. After the large investments done during previous years, it's only natural that the second priority is to ensure value creation from these investments," Lundmark said.
Nonetheless, he cautioned that foreseeing market development towards the end of the 2020s will be increasingly challenging, but he said Fortum believes the uncertainty will also provide new business opportunities.
"Consequently, as our fourth priority, we aim to build on our existing competences and emerging technologies to create new businesses, independent of power prices, that have the potential for sizeable profit contribution," he said.
Lundmark noted that one example of initiatives in this area is Fortum's commitment to invest in Valo Ventures, a new global venture capital fund.
Valo Ventures invests in digital start-ups focusing on key global megatrends that are central to Fortum's strategy.
Fortum launched Valo Ventures in December together with Scott Tierney, former Google Capital co-founder.
By Murat Temizer