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The AES Corporation


At a Glance


Good pay and benefits.

Easy to move from department to department.


Too little recognition for performance.

Not much overtime.

The Bottom Line

The AES Corporation is a global leader, and with 29,000 employees in 29 countries, employees must be prepared to be a little fish in a big pond.

About The AES Corporation

The AES Corp. is a world power producer. The US-based company has interests in about 70 generation facilities in more than 15 countries throughout the Americas, Asia, Africa, Europe, and the Middle East. AES sells electricity to utilities, industrial users, and intermediaries. The company also sells power directly to end-users, such as homes and businesses, mainly in Latin America and the US. Natural gas generates the biggest share of electricity, while renewables generate about 30%. The US supplies about 40% of AES' revenue. Overall, AES provides power to some 2.4 million customers.


AES operates generation businesses across four continents and six utility companies. Its portfolio generates more than 31,800 MW of power and its six utility businesses distribute power to about 2.4 million people. AES's two utilities in the US have generation capacity of more than 4,100 MW.

In addition to traditional power generation and electric distribution businesses, AES owns and operates more than 9,200 MW of renewable generation, including hydro, wind, energy storage, solar, biomass, and landfill gas.

AES' reportable segments are: the US and Utilities (United States, Puerto Rico, and El Salvador) SBU, which generates about 40% of revenue; the South America  (Chile, Colombia, Argentina, and Brazil) SBU, about a third of revenue; the MCAC (Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean) SBU, more than 15% of revenue; and the Eurasia (Europe and Asia) SBU, more than 10% of revenue.

Geographic Reach

The US supplies about 40% of AES’ revenue, followed by Chile with about 20%. The other countries where AES has operations each provide around 5% or less of the company’s revenue.

AES has about 30 generation facilities and two utilities in the US, more than 50 generation facilities in Brazil, Chile, Colombia and Argentina; about 20 generation facilities in the Dominican Republic, Mexico, and Panama; a handful of distribution businesses in El Salvador; and more than 10 generation plants in Bulgaria, India, Jordan, The Netherlands, Vietnam, and the UK.

Sales and Marketing

AES' generation business owns and operates power plants to generate and sell power to wholesale customers such as utilities, industrial users, and other intermediaries. Its utilities sell to end-user customers in the residential, commercial, industrial and governmental sectors.

Financial Performance

After two years of falling revenue (down 9% and 30%), AES generated 2% increases in 2017 and 2018. Over a longer term, the company’s revenue has fluctuated largely depending on energy markets.

In 2018, revenue increased $206 million to $10.7 billion from 2017. Driving revenue in 2018 were higher contract sales and prices in South America that included greater capacity prices in Argentina because of market reforms enacted in 2017. The MCAC region's revenue rose due to the start of operations at the Colon and Los Mina combined cycle facilities. Revenue from the US and Utilities segment advanced on higher market energy sales at Southland, higher regulated rates at DPL (Dayton, Ohio), and higher wholesale volume and retail demand at IPL (Indianapolis). Some of AES' gains were offset by the sale of some operations.

AES posted net income of $1.2 billion in 2018 compared to a $1.1 billion loss in 2017. In 2018, the company had gains from the sales of several facilities in the Philippines and South America, while the 2017 red ink came from losses on the sales of Kazakhstan facilities, the deconsolidation of the Eletropaulo distribution business in Brazil, and the impact of US Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

AES had about $2 billion in cash in 2018 compared to about $1.8 billion the year before. In 2018, operating activities produced $2.3 billion, investing activities used $505 million, and financing activities used $1.6 billion.

AES has about $19 billion in debt with a debt-to-equity ratio of 6.91 compared to the industry average of 1.6. The significant level of debt could increase the company's vulnerability to general adverse industry and economic conditions, reduce available cash flow for other corporate purposes, and put it at a disadvantage with competitors with less debt. AES reduced its debt by $1 billion in 2018.


AES is more focused today than it was less than a decade ago. From nearly 30 markets, the company operates in about a dozen markets where it claims competitive advantage. In the process, AES has made its income statement and balance sheet more secure in reducing its exposure to foreign currency, commodities, and hydrology by 70%.

The company has brought online new, more efficient generating facilities such as the 671 MW Eagle Vallery combined cycle gas plant at Indianapolis Power and Light (IPL). The project replaced about half of IPL’s coal-fired generation with natural gas. In Panama, AES introduced liquid natural gas (LNG) to the Central American market with the construction of the 381MW AES Colón combined cycle gas plant and regasification terminal. The company expects that the entry of low-cost US LNG will boost the Central American energy sector.

AES upped its commitment to reduce its carbon intensity (measured in tons of CO2/MWh of generation) by 70% from 2016 to 2030 from its previous goal 50%. The company expects to hit the 50% goal by 2022.

Company Background

Applied Energy Services (AES) was founded in 1981, three years after passage of the Public Utilities Regulation Policies Act, which enabled small power firms to enter electric generation markets formerly dominated by utility monopolies. Co-founders Roger Sant and Dennis Bakke, who had served in President Nixon's Federal Energy Administration, saw that an independent power producer (IPP) could make money by generating cheap power in large volumes to sell to large power consumers and utilities.


The AES Corporation

Arlington, VA 22203-4168
Phone: 1 (703) 522-1315

Firm Stats

Employer Type: Publicly Owned
Stock Symbol: AES
Stock Exchange: , NYSE
CEO: Andrés R. Gluski
President and COO: Patrick Moran
Chairman: Charles O. Rossotti
Employees (This Location): 270
Employees (All Locations): 21,000

Major Office Locations

Arlington, VA

Other Locations

Mendota, CA
North Palm Springs, CA
Redondo Beach, CA
Indianapolis, IN
Martinsville, IN
Petersburg, IN
Manchester, OH
Marysville, OH
Miamisburg, OH
Moraine, OH
Condon, OR
Morgantown, WV
Santiago, Chile
Bhubaneswar, India
Gurgaon, India
New Delhi, India
Moscow, Russia
Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic