From Iceland — Reykjavík Energy Report: Failure Lies With Management

Reykjavík Energy Report: Failure Lies With Management

Published October 12, 2012

A report detailing the investigation into what went wrong at Orkuveitu Reykjavíkur (Reykjavík Energy) places the blame mostly on mismanagement, but also says no political party is absolved from the matter.
As reported, the company – which is majority owned by the city of Reykjavík – hid losses that totaled staggering figures. In 2011, the city discussed financially supporting the company through a special fund created in the wake of the economic collapse. The fund was estimated to be at around 10 to 12 billion ISK. However, an annual report showed that in September 2010, Reykjavík Energy was in debt to the tune of some 230 billion ISK.
A new report (.pdf file) reveals the results of an investigation into where things went wrong in the company and who was responsible. The verdict does not look good for the board at Reykjavík Energy.
Margrét Pétursdóttir, the chairperson of the investigation committee, told RÚV that while the company did well with projects under its direct control, it also expanded operations into areas it did not directly control. An unclear mission, coupled with a lack of control on how investors spent their money, profit losses, high dividends, and delays in raising fees all helped contribute to the company’s ultimately crushing debt.
However, no political party is innocent of a lack of attentiveness to what was going on at Reykjavík Energy. The company’s debt increased from 17.7 billion ISK in 2002 to 224.4 billion ISK by the end of 2010. During this time, every political party on town council had been in power at one point or another.

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