The Shareholders' Newsletter SN#65

Chairman’s message by Patrick Pouyanné


© REAL-Total


We want to anchor our transformation strategy and our ambition for carbon neutrality in a new name: TotalEnergies.

Patrick Pouyanné,
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Total

Dear Shareholders, 

All of us will remember 2020 as a landmark year that brought unexpected challenges and led to significant changes. The pandemic has taken a terrible toll on people with global estimates of more than 100 million cases and more than 2 million lives lost thus far. In response to the virus, widespread lockdowns disrupted the global economy on a world-war scale, wrecking businesses and livelihoods to an unimaginable extent. We will look back at 2020 and remember it as a punishing year for the industry: while dealing with the Covid-related health and safety concerns, as well as maintaining continuity of operations, Brent fell below $20 per barrel and it became a real test of faith. 

So 2020 was full of “short term” challenges that we had to tackle and once again Total demonstrated its resilience by maintaining a solid financial position and results superior to those of its main rivals, with an adjusted net income of $4.1 billion, cash‑flow generation of nearly $18 billion, an organic cash break-even at $26 per barrel and a gearing at 21.7%.

But 2020 is also a pivotal year in terms of global consciousness of the planet’s fragility. In many ways, we recognize the world has changed dramatically. Digitalization, for example, has accelerated and is changing the way we do business making everything more efficient. Europe is leading the way on the Green Deal and now this is becoming a global effort, with other major markets moving in the same direction, including the United States, China and India, Japan and Korea. 

That’s why we also need to think “long term”. In the midst of the 2020 global crisis, Total launched a bold new strategy to transform itself into a broad energy company with the view to get to Net Zero Emissions in all its activities by 2050, together with society. Thus the Group’s profile will be transformed over the 2020-30 decade: the growth of energy production will be based on two pillars, liquefied natural gas and electricity, mainly from renewables, while oil products are expected to fall from 55% to 30% of sales.

To anchor this transformation, the Group will propose to its shareholders at the Annual General meeting on May 28, 2021, changing its name to TotalEnergies. You will therefore have the opportunity to endorse this strategy and the underlying ambition to transition to carbon neutrality. It’s a historic step. The choice of TotalEnergies naturally includes a nod to our past, that we are proud of, and to what we are now, without which we would not be able to prepare the future. It explicitly states what we want to be: a leader in a world with more energies and fewer emissions. The company of responsible energies.

Confident in the Group’s fundamentals, the Board of Directors confirms its policy of supporting the dividend through economic cycles. Therefore, it will propose at the Annual General Meeting of Shareholders, the distribution of a final dividend of €0.66 per share, equal to the previous three quarters, and set the dividend for 2020 to €2.64 per share. 

I know I can count on you to accompany the Group in its transformation. Take care of yourselves, and I will see you on May 28 for the Annual General Meeting.

Thank you for your loyalty.

Patrick Pouyanné