(Reuters) - At least four Spanish companies plan to move their legal base out of Catalonia as the industrialised region considers declaring independence.
Banco Sabadell, Eurona Wireless Telecom, Dogi International Fabrics and Oryzon Genomics have all announced such a move. None have said they intend to move actual staff or operations for now.
Catalonia is a hub for industry and tourism accounting for a fifth of Spain’s economic output, a production base for major multinationals from Volkswagen (VOWG_p.DE) to Nestle and home to Europe’s fastest-growing sea port.
The region contributed roughly a quarter of Spain’s exports in 2016, with chemicals, auto parts, vehicles and food accounting for about half of Catalan exports.
** Caixabank is Spain’s third-largest lender by market value. It is expected to decide on Friday whether to move its legal base out of Catalonia.
Market capitalisation: 25 billion euros (22.40 billion pounds)
** Gas Natural Fenosa is a utility company supplying gas and electricity to southern Europe and Latin America. The company’s board is due to vote on moving its legal base on Friday, according to a source familiar with the situation.
Market capitalisation: 18 billion euros
** Abertis builds, maintains and operates highways in Spain, France and the Americas. It has a telecom business that manages and operates satellite infrastructure and transmission towers. Madrid-based rival ACS is looking to bid for the company.
Market capitalisation: 17 billion euros
** Grifols is a biopharmaceuticals company headquartered in Barcelona and a leader in blood plasma products.
Market capitalisation: 15 billion euros
** Volkswagen’s (VOWG_p.DE) Spanish unit Seat SA employs 14,000 people at its three production centres in the region. About 450,000 vehicles were assembled at these plants in 2016. Earlier this week, Seat was forced to halt production briefly on one of three production lines when referendum-related protests disrupted parts supplies.
** Nissan Motor’s Spanish headquarters is in Barcelona. The company owns a production plant in Barcelona’s Zona Franca industrial area, where it produces the Nissan Navara, the Nissan Pulsar and the Nissan NV200.
** Hewlett Packard’s worldwide headquarters for 3D and large format printing businesses is in Catalonia and it employs 1,800 people in the region.
** The headquarters of Nestle Spain are in Barcelona and it has four plants in the region. Its coffee plant in Girona produces 2.4 billion capsules and 32,000 tons of instant coffee annually.
(Sources: Thomson Reuters Eikon, company websites, Government of Catalonia website, LinkedIn)
($1 = 0.8556 euros)
Compiled by Joao Manuel Vicente Mauricio, Joanna Jonczyk-Gwizdala and Sylwia Lasek in Gdynia; Editing by Keith Weir