FPL - An OverviewFPL Group, Inc. is Florida's largest electric utility company. In 1925, through the consolidation of numerous electric and gas companies, they formed Florida Power & Light Company (FP&L). FP&L grew steadily over the next 50 years until rising fuel costs, operating issues, and construction costs began to decrease profitability. In the mid-1980s, FPL diversified with four major acquisitions - Colonial Penn Life Insurance Company, Telesat Cablevision, Inc., CBR Information Group Inc., and Turner Foods Corporation- in order to minimize the potential risk within the utilities industry.
To address problems in operations, FPL began a rigorous program of Japanese-inspired quality control. Management succeeded in transforming FPL into a lean operational system resulting in a drop in scheduled downtime from 18% to 4%, while customer complaints also fell by 60%. By 1989, FPL was recognized as "one of the best-managed U.S. corporations." Despite the progress in quality, FPL was still dealing with problems: Colonial Penn was losing money, there were safety concerns about a particular nuclear plant, and demand was growing faster than capacity.
In 1989, James Broadhead succeeded Chairman Marshall McDonald. Broadhead placed an emphasis on commitment to quality and customer service, increasing focus on the utilities industry, expanding capacity, and improving cost positions. He took measures to scale back the intense quality controls while still working to preserve the high level of operational efficiency. Furthermore, Broadhead brought focus back to FPL's core business - utilities, by selling off many of its non-utility businesses. FPL also budgeted $6.6 billion, spread over five years, for expansion. They funded the development through internal profits and by issuing $3.7 billion of long-term debt and $1.9 billion of common stock.
The Electric Utility IndustryFPL is an established leader in the utility industry. They have proven their ability to...