History

History

Our history, at Grupo Energía de Bogotá, begins with the history of Empresa de Energía de Bogotá (EEB), which is also closely linked to the history of our city, as progress in Bogota has been parallel to EEB's development.


EEB was founded in 1896 by the Samper Brush brothers, and it was named Compañía de Energía Eléctrica de Bogotá. It was a power generation pioneer in Colombia, and started by lighting the most visited streets in Bogotá.

During the first half of the XX Century, the Company underwent a series of legal changes, nonetheless maintaining its technical evolution, becoming the sole power service provider in the capital city.

In 1959, when the city acquired 100% of the company's shares, the Company had developed a significant expansion plan that allowed it, during its first 63 years of operation, to have six hydraulic units and complete the El Muña dam, which is currently its main source of power generation.

EEB's Milestones

  • 2012 - 2011 - 2010 - 2009 - 2008
    • In 2012, the Company was the successful bidder of three electricity transmission bids in Colombia, comprising UPME projects, as follows: Subestación Eléctrica Armenia, 220 kV with its connecting lines, Subestación Eléctrica Alférez, 220 kV (Cali) with its connecting lines, and Subestación Eléctrica Tesalia, 220 kV (Huila) with its connecting lines.
    • On November 10 of that same year, it successfully carried out a placement of Notes in the international capital market for an amount of US$610 million.  The aim of this transaction was to finance the notes issued in 2007, which included an advanced purchase option. This operation had an outstanding result, and EEB was able to obtain significant savings that will be used to strengthen the financial plan, and thus move forward into achieving established goals set in its strategic plan.
    • In 2011, an issuance of shares was carried out, through which the market trusted EEB resources amounting to approximately US$420 million, aimed at financing the entire expansion plan of the Company.
    • In 2011, EEB acquired 60% of Gas Natural de Lima y el Callao S.A., Cálidda in Perú and 15,6% of Promigas, the second largest gas carrier in Colombia
    • TGI and Transcogas merger was completed in 2010, the company is also the successful bidder for the expansion of EEB's electricity transmission network in the southwestern region of Colombia, with the awarding of the reactors project by UPME, and it reached an agreement to capitalize TGI through a private investor, with a contribution of US$400 million, which transaction was concluded on March 2011 with the CVCI Group - Inversiones en Energía Latinamericana Holdings, from Citi Group.
    • In 2009, EEB is awarded bid PET 1-2009, the most important Electricity Transmission project in Guatemala, comprising (6 lots-850 km of network - 12 new substations and 12 enhancements to substations).  It also acquired the control of Empresa de Energía de Cundinamarca S.A.ESP (EEC), through Distribuidora Eléctrica de Cundinamarca (DECSA), in an alliance with Codensa.
    • That same year,  Fundación Grupo de Energía de Bogotá is incorporated and is the successful bidder for the construction and operation of ICA regional gas pipelines in Peru, and such deed was formalized by the execution of a Concession Agreement in March 2009.
    • In 2008, EEB enters into an agreement with Transcogas minority shareholders to purchase its respective shares, allowing the company to hold 99.99% of the company's stock.
  • 2007 - 2006 - 2005 - 2002
    • In 2007, the largest issuance of notes took place in the country by TGI, amounting to US$750 million for 10 years and an in-house issuance amounting to US$610 million for seven years.  In addition, it completed its electric interconnection project in Ecuardor.
    • In December 2006, EEB was the successful bidder of an assets, rights and contracts transfer process of Empresa Colombiana de Gas (Ecogas). As per the above, on February 16, 2007 the incorporation of Transportadora de Gas del Interior, a public limited company, took place. On March 3, 2007, the company concluded its financial closure and began operations. The name of the company was changed in 2009 to Transportadora de Gas Internacional S.A.
    • As of 2006, EEB together with ISA, were the successful bidders of the company Consorcio Transmantaro (CTM) in Peru
    • In 2005, EEB became involved in natural gas transport activities through the acquisition of 72% of Transcogas, a company dedicated to the transport of natural gas towards Bogota and its area of influence. Furthermore, it was awarded the expansion of EEB's electricity transmission network with the interconnection with Ecuador through UPME, the acquisition of Termo-Candelaria transmission assets and was also awarded la Compensacion in the Tunal electric substation by UPME.
    • In 2002, the Company acquired 40% of the shares belonging to Red de Energía del Perú (REP), the largest transmission company in Peru.
  • 1997 - 1981 - 1960
    • On October 23, 1997 the Company underwent a thorough transformation process by carrying out the capitalization of the Company with international resources, which allowed for the separation of its activities, thus Codensa and Emgesa were incorporated, the former in charge of distribution and marketing activities, and the latter in charge of generation and marketing activities. Transmission activities are managed directly by Empresa de Energía de Bogotá, becoming its main activity in the electric sector.
    • Between 1960 and 1981, the Company started operation of plants and hydroelectric plants, such as Guavio and expanded its services to an array of municipalities in the Provinces of Cundinamarca and Meta.
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EEB entered into an agreement with Universidad Externado de Colombia aimed at preparing a document comprising the History of Empresa de Energía de Bogotá.

There are three volumes of EEB's history, comprising its history from 1897 to date, and are readily made available to the reader.

Volume I

Volume II

Volume III

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  • (1896 - 1927)

    The first volume explores the topic of lighting and energy transformation systems, which takes the reader back in time to a pre-hispanic era, to continue exploring colonial times and leading into the XX Century.  Researchers also took hold of conceptual elements that at first glance may appear alien to the core investigation, but in truthm they help to generate a discourse that is authentic and autonomous. 

    The lack of bibliography on this topic, together with the few, first hand, documentary sources, compel the reader to analyze details in existing documents and construe thoroughly upon them, to avoid listing repeatedly names and dates, but instead creating a story where narrative, anecdote and historical references intertwine to recreate the surroundings and the way-of-life of former inhabitants of the highlands of Bogota; they had concerns regarding energy and lighting systems for over five centuries. 

    In this first part, consisting of three chapters, the first one talks about how native inhabitants used fire in their rituals and also looks at its domestic and industrial use, meaning the use of fire as a source of lighting or energy, in practical terms, or as an element or object tied to symbols of some religious nature.

    Then, the readers submerges in the world of "santafereños" or former Spanish settlers or colonists, and how they resorted to fire as a lighting source or as an instrument for technical development, while, at the same time, they examined new sources of energy to which they resorted to, to bring progress to the community. To conclude, the third chapter describes energetic techniques and public and household lighting systems along the XIX Century, to the arrival of electricity in Bogota.

  • (1927-1959)

    The second volume, which encompasses years 1927 to 1959, depicts the history of Empresa de Energía de Bogotá, its transformations, changes, documents and anecdotes during said period. The book also keeps significant and treasured memories on the history of Bogotá, such as the tramp or the old Bogotá which extended only to the old neighborhood of Chapinero.

    The first few pages talk about the merger between Compañía Nacional de Electricidad and Compañía de Energía Eléctrica de Bogotá, giving way to the company's technical expansion and its restructuring.  During the thirties, the company begins a transformation phase which entailed making difficult decisions, such as layoffs and reduction of salaries, while updating its technology, which at the time, was lagging behind with respect to other countries in the region.

    In addition, this volume talks about the transition of thermal plants powered by coal to the hydraulic technology - whicn in itself determined what is known as the "flooding" of the Bogota plains  which led to the projects of Alicachín, Muña, El Charquito, El Salto, Laguneta, Mesitas del Colegio, Guatavita and El Guavio— and the construction of infrastructure which meant new paths and roads and the mounting of infrastructure for transportation means powered by electricity.  Furthermore, it increased the Company's area of influence, as it began to render services to other municipalities in Cundinamarca.

    We must no overlook an important reference to labor relations: there isn't a single aspect of the life of the former Empresas Unidas de Energía Eléctrica and today's Empresa de Energía de Bogotá, where the contribution of its workers had not been decisive towards driving the Company's development. Special recognition is awarded to workers who helped found the company, who defended their headquarters during the civil unrest of 9 April 1948, and who have help build one of the oldest utility companies in the country.

    This volume is also dedicated to renown personalities who have impacted the Company and have left their indelible footprint, such as Mr. Alfonso López Pumarejo, Mr. Carlos Lleras Restrepo and  Mr. Diego Montaña Cuéllar. 

  • (1959-2000)

    The third and last volume, comprises the period from 1959 to the end of the XX Century, and it is divided into three fundamental stages that gather, together with the company's development, the influence in the conception of State.

    The first sage reconstruct the rise of interventionism world wide, which was also felt in our country.  During this period, the municipality, to guarantee electricity coverage in the entire city, determined the municipalization of the Company and the end of its private era. This stage is marked with the name of important Colombian men, who had a transcendent influence in its development, such as Mr. Manuel Madero París, Mr. Eduardo Cuéllar, Mr. Jaime Samper Ortega and Mr. Hernán Borrero Urrutia.

    The second stage is marked by the boom of "enhancements" and "significant investments", which contributed to the technological transformation of the municipal energy industry. The construction of large hydroelectric and thermal plants the increase in the number of substations and transformers in the city, the change in voltage to 115-230 as required by international standards, rural electrification and for the first time in the country, the interest for natural gas as an electricity alternative, all these milestones helped shaped the company and made it a more than just a utilities company, it became an institution that with its future, defined the future of the city.

    The final stage projects the company towards the third millennium and recalls an unprecedented transformation in the history of the country, which relinquished to a private initiative the rendering of a fundamental public service for modern life; Grupo Endesa España, one of the most important companies in the electricity sector became now in charge of said service. 

    After a complex process due to the definition of rates and the financing of macro infrastructure projects, the shortage that the country underwent, the need to interconnect the national electricity system and the growing difficulty regarding pension liabilities of mores than 4500 workers in 1997, Empresa de Energía de Bogotá decided to relinquish to the private sector the administration of two of its most important businesses, maintaining its strategic presence as a shareholder.

    This task would not have been possible, without the leadership of former Mayor Mr. Antanas Mockus and to General Manager, Mr. Fabio Chaparro, wh died in a plane accident while on duty, and Mr. Pablo Orozco who completed the transition process of EEB and envisioned the company as it is today, one of the most financially sound companies in the country.

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Origins of electricity in Colombia, summary from the book the Colombian Electric Sector, origins, evolution and challenges. One century of developments (1882-1999). View more