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Enron International (EI) was Enron's wholesale asset development and asset management business. Its primary focus was developing and building natural gas power plants outside North America. Enron Engineering and Construction Company (EECC) was a wholly owned subsidiary of Enron International, and built almost all of Enron International's power plants. Unlike other business units of Enron, Enron International had a strong cash flow on bankruptcy filing. Enron International consisted of all of Enron's foreign power projects including ones in Europe.
Rebecca Mark was the CEO of Enron International until she moved over to lead Enron's newly acquired water business, Azurix, in 1997. Mark played a major role in the development of the Dabhol project in India, Enron's largest international endeavor.
Enron International constructed a lot of power plants and pipelines all across the globe. Some today are still up and running. Others, like a barge mounted plant off Puerto Plata in the Dominican Republic, cost Enron loads of money through lawsuits and investment losses. Puerto Plata was a barge mounted power plant next to a hotel called Hotelero del Atlantico. When the plant was fired up, winds blew soot from the plant onto the hotel guests' meals, blackening their food. The winds also blew garbage from nearby slums in the plant's water-intake system. For some time the only solution was to hire men who would row out and push the garbage away with their paddles. For Enron, the deal was a complete waste of money. Through mid-2000 the company collected a paltry $3.5 million from a $95 million investment. Other projects considered investments in Europe, South America, Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Colombia, Mexico, Jamaica, and across the Caribbean.
Enron is well known for its actions in India. Around 1992 India came to the United States to find energy investors to help India with its energy shortage problems. Many countries were wary of doing business with India; Enron was not. In December 1993, Enron inked a 20-year power-purchase contract with the Maharashtra State Electricity Board. The contract allowed Enron to construct a massive 2,015 megawatt power plant. Construction would be completed in two phases and Enron would form its own power company to help manage the plant, the Dabhol Power Company. The power project was the first step in a $20 billion scheme to help rebuild and stabilize India's power grid. Enron, GE (who was selling turbines to the project), and Bechtel (who was actually constructing the plant), each put up 10 percent equity.
During the summer of 2001, Enron was making an attempt to sell a lot of Enron International's assets, many of which were not sold. It is still unclear why Enron wanted to sell all of these assets. Most suspect it was because Enron was in need of cash.