Atlas Copco this week reported fourth-quarter results with continued growth in orders and revenues. In 4Q11, revenues increased 16 percent organically to SEK 22.3 billion (about U.S. $3.30 billion) from SEK 19.4 billion (U.S. $2.87 billion) in the same period a year ago. Operating profit in the fourth quarter was SEK 4.6 billion (U.S. $680.4 million) an improvement from SEK 4.0 billion (U.S. $591.7 million) in the year-ago period, corresponding to a margin of 20.6 percent. The full-year organic revenue increase was 22 percent to SEK 81.2 billion (U.S. $12.01 billion), with a margin of 21.6 percent.
“We have had a solid end to a year that was nothing less than fantastic for Atlas Copco,” said Ronnie Leten, president and CEO of the Atlas Copco Group. “Demand for our products and services was better than expected during the quarter.”
In the near term, the overall demand for Atlas Copco’s products and services is expected to weaken somewhat from the current high level.
“We have a good starting point but a challenging task ahead; the global outlook is difficult to predict and we will continue seeking long- and short-term growth opportunities,” Leten said. “During the fourth quarter we invested in competence development in all markets, developed our manufacturing capacity in Asia and made acquisitions to extend our presence and product offering.”
The board of directors of Atlas Copco AB proposed a dividend of SEK 5.00 (U.S. $0.74) per share, corresponding to a total distribution to shareholders of SEK 6.1 billion.
Headquartered in Stockholm, Sweden, Atlas Copco is an industrial group with world-leading positions in compressors, expanders and air treatment systems, construction and mining equipment, power tools and assembly systems.