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Information on research and development (R&D)



Abengoa has continued to increase its efforts in R&D&i (Research, Development and Innovation) throughout 2010 (despite the prolonging of the global technology crisis), with a strong belief that to achieve real future benefits, such investment requires continuous input which should not be adversely affected by the crisis or economic cycles.

Further, the Group has strengthened its presence, and in other cases its leadership, in various institutions, public forums and private forums in which cooperation is encouraged between the large technology companies, also being where the long and short term future of R&D&i is decided.


 The programs set out for R&D activities have substantially been achieved. Abengoa, through those responsible for the strategy in each areas of the business, has pushed, on a day-to-day basis, a higher level of innovation in the technologies developed, as required and reflected in the characteristics of the businesses, focusing primarily on the following objectives:

  •  Continuously and closely following the technologies which could affect each area of the business.
  • Selection of a portfolio of technologies which will maximise the competitive advantages of the Group.
  • The granting of and introduction of technology available through Transfer Agreements.
  •  Selecting the optimum path for the development of technologies.
  • Determining the programs for marketing from the technology developed.
  •  Utilisation of support from institutions/governments for innovation and technology.


Of all such efforts, of note is that during 2011, R&D activity has been undertaken by Group companies in accordance with the requirements identified for their respective markets. The majority of the Group’s projects are aligned with R&D objectives of the Spanish administrations (the Ministry of Industry and Energy), of Europe (R&D framework programs) and the U.S. (Department of Energy).

Abengoa engages in R&D both directly as well as through third-party contracts which are typically public organisations dedicated to such work, university departments, or other private or public entities. Additionally, during the year, Abengoa has made strategic investments in pioneering companies in the US and Canada, developing and owning technologies which are defined as “high priority”, such as biofuels and control systems, with the objective of enabling internationalisation and the generation of value through these technologies in key emerging markets.

R&D is a strategic activity for Abengoa with regards to its planning for future periods. It is undertaken by the business groups in harmony with the demands of their respective markets so as to provide the necessary competitive capacities of the Group on an ongoing basis.


In 2011, investment in R&D&i totaled €91 M compared to €69 M in 2010. In 2012, a further increase in R&D&i investment is anticipated. Of note are projected investments in projects in relation to the conversions of biomass and ethanol and solar-related projects.