The Linde Group continued to give a robust performance in the 2012 financial year, again achieving significant increases in group revenue and group operating profit.
Highlights include a more than 10% rise in group revenue, a 10% increase in group operating profit, and an 8% increase in its proposed dividend.
Further, the group confirmed its outlook for 2013, targeting increased revenue and operating profit of at least €4bn.
Professor Dr Wolfgang Reitzle, CEO of Linde AG, said of the group’s performance, “We have been able to hold our own, although the climate has worsened in the course of the year.”
“This shows that our business model, which is geared towards sustainability, is working. The stability of the Group has been further strengthened by our acquisition of Lincare.’
Against this background, it is with real confidence that Linde looks to the future.
“Even though conditions are unlikely to improve, we are sticking to our targets,” added Reitzle. “In the 2013 financial year, we want once again to generate higher group revenue than in the previous year and to achieve group operating profit of at least €4bn.”
The group has also set itself new medium-term targets, as Reitzle explained, “We are seeking to generate group operating profit of at least €5bn in the 2016 financial year. In that same year, return on capital employed (ROCE) should reach around 14%.”
Linde continues to see good opportunities for growth especially in global megatrends, energy and the environment, healthcare, and in the emerging economies.
Linde will continue to implement HPO, its holistic concept designed to achieve sustainable efficiency gains, and it plans to reduce total gross costs by a further €750m to €900m in the years 2013 to 2016.
“We are determined to seize these opportunities as they arise and to work consistently to enhance the performance of our group,” concluded Reitzle.