The Public Gas Company (DEPA) was established in September 1988 as a state-owned S.A. company with the aim of introducing natural gas to the Greek energy market.
Today, DEPA COMMERCIAL S.A. and its subsidiaries are a modern and competitive group of companies with the aim of importing, transporting, distributing, and selling natural gas.
The Group has a strong presence in the energy sector of the country and contributes substantially to the development of the Greek economy, the protection of the environment, and the improvement of the quality of life of the local communities.
With the continuous expansion of the natural gas grid (pipelines), the creation of new gas supply companies, and new business models, DEPA Group brings natural gas to more and more regions of Greece.
With long-term gas supply contracts (pipeline gas and LNG), it supports the country's sufficiency and security of supply, while at the same time developing important initiatives to make Greece a key natural gas transit node to Europe from countries with rich natural gas reserves.
VISION AND STRATEGY
The vision of the company is to act as a strong regional energy company that will offer quality and innovative services, contributing to the wellbeing of society.
- Maintaining leadership in the liberalized, competitive domestic market
- The exploitation of the geographical position and the energy potential of the country for the creation and exploitation of development opportunities in Greece and in the wider region
- Increasing the penetration of natural gas into the Greek energy market
- The maintenance and continuous improvement of a competitive and sufficiently diversified gas supply portfolio
- To create a modern and cost-effective organization that responds and adapts successfully to the changing needs of the market and society and exploits future growth opportunities by continuously improving its services with respect for people, society, and the environment.
STRUCTURE OF THE GROUP
DEPA Group consists of the mother company and its natural gas distribution subsidiary companies in Greece as well as joint ventures with other international companies in the energy sector with the aim of developing international projects that will make Greece an energy node for the EU.
The group is structured in such a way that:
- Meets the needs of the main business sectors in which the mother company operates but also the development of its strategy,
- Is in line with the institutional framework, and
- Ensures control of the operation and risk management.
DEPA COMMERCIAL S.A. follows the modern principles of corporate governance in accordance with Greek law and international best practices.
Corporate policies aim to protect the rights of the two shareholders (TAIPED SA and ELPE SA) and the interests of all stakeholders with responsibility, clarity, effective controls, and proper information.
Today, the Company counts about 200 personnel, consisting mainly of engineers and executives/associates with excellent educational background, with long experience and specialization, and loyalty and commitment to DEPA’s corporate principles and values.
45% of the staff are women, while 80% of the Company's employees are university graduates, many of whom hold at least one Master’s degree.
DEPA, recognizing that only people can make a difference, constantly upgrades their management systems, such as but not limited to, the performance management and human resource development management system, and ensures to make good use of its personnel.
It creates dynamic and competent working groups, enhancing in this way the efficiency of its employees, and multiplying their productivity.
It invests steadily in the professional and personal development of its executives, organizing training programs in the framework of training, which helps to develop their knowledge, talents, and skills. It seeks to strengthen corporate culture, professional ethics, and transparency and has adopted its own Code of Ethics.
Above all, however, the company takes care of a balanced and safe work environment and cultivates a climate of fruitful dialogue and collaboration with the staff, in order to achieve mutual goodwill and understanding.
DEPA AND “NATURAL GAS MOBILITY”
At present, the only company that is active with significant investments in the " natural gas mobility " market in Greece is DEPA COMMERCIAL S.A. DEPA is the catalyst that defines the growth potential of a new sector for the Greek economy.
The company has been operating in the field of "natural gas mobility" since 2001, supplying 600 natural gas buses of Athens Transport (ΕΘΕΛ) and 102 waste trucks of the municipalities. Their refueling takes place at two stations of DEPA, Anthousa, and Ano Liossia, with a capacity of 5,000 Nm3/h, a performance that ranks them among the largest in Europe.
Today, due to the financial difficulties of ΕΘΕΛ and due to the lack of support from the Greek state, there are only about 200 out of the 600 buses that operate.
Since September 2010, the DEPA station in Anthousa, Attica, and since March 2016, the Ano Liosia station operate also as fuel stations for the supply of professional and private vehicles with natural gas or dual-fuel engine. At the same time, DEPA, within the framework of the further development of the "gas transportation" in the country, has proceeded to the establishment and supply of gas stations in the major cities near the Athens-Thessaloniki national road.
DEPA offers natural gas to the "road transport" market under the trade name "FISIKON".
To date, nine additional CNG filling stations have been established at existing gas stations to supply professional and private vehicles:
- in Attica: Kifissia (EKO station), Nea Filadelfia (EKO station), Koropi (EKO station), Ag. I. Rentis (EKO station),
- in Thessaloniki: Pylea (EKO station) and Nea Magnesia (BP station),
- in Larissa (EKO station),
- in Volos (BP station), and
- in Lamia (BP station).
The existing network of CNG gas stations mainly serves local and over-local traffic on the main axis linking the cities of Thessaloniki and Athens.
It is estimated that around 2,200 gas vehicles are circulating in the country.
STRATEGY FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF GAS TRANSPORTATION
One of the main strategic objectives of DEPA is to maintain its leading position in the natural gas market in Greece. This can also happen through the diversification of the use of natural gas in new markets.
The purchase of vehicles with natural gas shows a significant growth in EU countries and North America. All major energy companies are investing in gas stations for private and public use. Taking into account the economic and existing regulatory framework as well as the size of the specific market, the "natural gas mobility" sector is an activity that can provide profitability and satisfactory growth rates.
The three main barriers to the growth of natural fuel in the vehicle are:
- The lack of refueling infrastructure,
- The high cost of purchase (or conversion) of vehicles (NGVs), and
- The low level of consumer acceptance.
These three obstacles create a vicious circle: the number of service stations is limited because there are not enough vehicles available, vehicles are not sold or have competitive prices because of low demand, and consumers do not use the vehicles due to their higher cost of ownership and lack of infrastructure.
For this reason, DEPA’s strategy for the development of "natural gas mobility" in Greece is based on two axes:
- The development of a basic network of points of sale (CNG stations),
- And at the same time the Creation of a basic CNG fleet of vehicles (NGVs) which will offer the first experience at an affordable price to consumers/drivers resulting in the acceptance of the new fuel and the increase in demand for vehicles, which in turn will reduce the cost of purchasing a factory vehicle or the conversion of a gasoline or diesel car to a natural gas vehicle in Greece.
The strategy of developing "natural gas mobility" is implemented through two Phases:
1st Phase: Selective Penetration
At this stage, the emphasis was put on the development of public outlets (CNG stations) in large urban centers, the development of professional fleets by subsidizing the purchase or conversion of a vehicle for local use (or over-local use on Athens –Thessaloniki national road) and the rapid increase of the size of the "local" market for the creation of economies of scale for the selling points in operation.
At this stage, the "ambassador" sales promotion programs for commercial vehicles were particularly important, with the aim of accelerating the acceptance of CNG by consumers.
The first phase will be completed by the end of the first half of 2018 with the operation of 11 points of sale in the cities of Thessaloniki, Larissa, Volos, Lamia, and Athens. The implementation of Phase 1 has been a valuable source of experience and data recovery that rationalizes business growth and, through this, provides additional economies of experience.
2nd Phase: Diffuse Development (large scale)
In the second phase, greater emphasis will be placed on the geographical dispersion of "natural gas mobility" in Mainland Greece, the promotion of the use of Natural Gas in many parts of the automotive fuel market, the use of new technologies, and the establishment of points of sale for private and public use. This phase will bring economies of scale and economies of scope.
The long-term goal is also the adoption of the use of liquefied natural gas (LNG) and biogas in the "gas transportation" business. Both fuels are natural gas in a different form or from different origins, which will open significant opportunities to diversify the DEPA product in the new market that is being developed.
A key element of DEPA's strategy for "natural gas mobility" is the development of strategic alliances involving co-operation with other companies in order for the company to be able to achieve synergies and leverage corporate resources with the cooperating companies.
Mr. Panou has a diploma in Mechanical Engineering from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and is a member of the Technical Chamber of Greece. He is a certified Energy Auditor and holds the 4th degree of the Greek Constructors’ Experience Registry. In DEPA COMMERCIAL S.A. is the Head of Natural Gas Mobility Department managing the development, construction, stations’ O&M activities, sales monitoring, and promotion of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) in Greece. He has extensive experience in project management in the sector of oil & gas while working for an infrastructure construction company driving the execution of EPC projects concerning pipelines, M/R stations, CNG stations, and tank farms.
Mr. Tsaprounis has a diploma in Environmental Engineering from the Democritus University of Thrace-Greece, he holds an M.Sc in Quality Assurance from the Hellenic Open University and he is a member of the Technical Chamber of Greece. Since 2019 he is involved, as an associate, in DEPA COMMERCIAL’s department for the development of natural gas mobility in Greece. He has extensive experience in project management, in proposal writings and submissions, and the implementation and management of national and European funded projects.
Mechanical Engineer Diploma studied at the University of Patras, with a concentration area at Energy Sector. Head of operations and maintenance at the refueling CNG stations of Anthousa and A.Liosia Attiki of DEPA COMMERCIAL S.A. Experienced in project management, detailed design studies, supervisions as a designer but also as a site engineer at various MEP sites, especially at energy facilities such as petrol stations, aboveground fuel storage tanks, CNG refueling stations, LPG storage tanks, etc. Has been assigned, as an account manager, both maintenance and construction projects throughout his career. Is a certified consultant of international carriage of dangerous goods by road and railway. (ADR/RID). Has been post trained as a certified associate in project management (Project Management Professional Courses).
Mrs. Tsiga is working at DEPA’s natural gas mobility department since 2011.
In DEPA she has over 12 years of professional experience in monitoring and supporting the organization of activities for the development of complex Natural Gas infrastructure projects, and over 15 years’ experience in several companies in implementing marketing activities for increasing consumer awareness for goods and services.
Mrs. Stampoulopoulou has professional experience since 2002 in the natural gas sector of DEPA infrastructure in co-financed Projects under the PA (Partnership Agreement for the Development Framework) and public funding programs. With main activities as such the preparation of tender documents & contracts as well as the management of technical supplies & contracts, since 2019 it deals with the projects of "Natural gas Mobility" in DEPA.
Mr. Peppas has a Diploma in Production and Management Engineering from the Democritus University of Thrace. He achieved an MSc degree in Energy Production and Management from the National Technical University of Athens. He is also a member of the Technical Chamber of Greece. He works at DEPA S.A from 2020 as an associate in the CNG Mobility Department in the field of Fisikon CNG stations technical support.