Group enjoys global growth, increases profit and creates scores of new jobs
Endress+Hauser increased sales and profit in 2017. The Group benefited from a strong business environment and introduced a wide range of product innovations, including the first digital services offering. Numerous new hires, substantial investments and great strides in the area of sustainability underscore the Group’s balanced growth.
Strong development on a local currency basis
In 2017 net sales rose 4.8 percent to 2.241 billion euros. The appreciation of the euro against most other currencies distorts the picture, however. “When adjusted for local currencies, we grew at a 6.5 percent rate; the instrumentation business enjoyed 8.0 percent growth,” said CEO Matthias Altendorf during the Group’s annual media conference in Basel. “We are confident that Endress+Hauser has strengthened its market position.”
A strong consumer business environment, stabilizing oil prices and low interest rates in 2017 led to greater investment activity in the process industry. “Apart from having to expand capacity, companies were looking for ways to produce more competitively, reliably and sustainably,” said Matthias Altendorf. Endress+Hauser supports their endeavors as a leading global provider of process and laboratory measurement technology, automation solutions and services.
Impetus from innovation and digitalization
“The business performed well across practically all regions and industries,” reported the CEO. Innovative technologies gave significant impetus to business. Endress+Hauser launched 57 new products and 571 instrument options last year. Expenditure on research and development rose to 170.7 million euros, which equates to 7.6 percent of sales. The significance of innovation at Endress+Hauser is reflected in 261 new patent applications. Digitalization is playing an increasingly important role.
Improvement on the earnings side
Endress+Hauser improved operating profit (EBIT) by 15.0 percent to 251.7 million euros. Profit before taxes (EBT) rose 24.9 percent to 275.6 million euros. Net income grew by 34.2 percent to 209.1 million euros. Return on sales (ROS) climbed 2.0 points to 12.3 percent. In contrast, the equity ratio sank 0.3 points to 70.2 percent due to exchange rate effects. Endress+Hauser invested 138.7 million euros worldwide.
Excellent score in sustainability
“As a family company it’s our aim to grow sustainably,” emphasized CEO Matthias Altendorf. One of the strategic key performance indicators in this respect is the EcoVadis benchmark, which rates supplier sustainability. In 2017 Endress+Hauser scored 66 out of 100 points to place in the top two percent of all companies that were evaluated. Endress+Hauser created 296 new jobs in 2017, significantly more than planned. At year end, 13,299 people worked for the Group.
Solid outlook for the current year
Endress+Hauser is off to a good start this year with a strong increase in incoming orders. The Group is planning growth in the mid-single-digit range and anticipates profitability remaining at the current level without extraordinary effects. 223 million euros have been set aside for investments and the Group plans to create up to 500 new jobs worldwide. “We expect 2018 to be another good year for Endress+Hauser,” said Matthias Altendorf.