KSB Group: slightly improved results, higher dividend for shareholders
FRANKENTHAL: Operating in a difficult business environment, the KSB Group closed the year 2001 successfully with pre-tax results of € 29.8 million, up from € 28.2 million.
A major contribution came from the German KSB AG, which continued to benefit from tax loss carryforwards. At the company's Annual General Meeting held in Frankenthal on 6 June 2002, share-holders could therefore decide on an increase in dividend payments of approximately 50 percent. This means a rise from € 2.50 to € 4.00 for ordinary shares, and from € 3.02 to € 4.26 for preference shares.
For the current financial year, the pump and valve manufacturer expects order intake, sales and results to range at prior-year levels. Any economic recovery will only be reflected in the industry with something of a time lag, explained Chairman of the Board Josef Gerstner at the Annual General Meeting.
In the first four months of the year 2002, the KSB Group succeeded in increasing its order intake by 2.6 percent compared with the previous year. This growth came from the European operations, as well as from Group companies in the Region Asia / Pacific. Only in the Region Americas and the Region Eastern Europe / Middle East / Africa did order intake overall lag behind prior-year levels.
KSB Group sales for the period from January to April 2002 were reported to have risen by 1.7 percent. Contributions came both from the European core companies and, overall, also from the consolidated companies in the Region Asia / Pacific and the Americas. A decline in sales was posted by the consolidated companies in the Region Eastern Europe / Middle East / Africa.
The number of employees in the KSB Group fell slightly by 1.9 percent and is now 12,010. This is above all attributable to personnel measures taken in some companies outside Europe.
With a view to making the most of the market opportunities in the coming years, the company aims to focus on deploying its resources on attractive and growing markets. Among these, KSB counts above all the water and waste water industry, as well as the industrial sector.
In the current business year, the company will also be pushing forward with two IT projects. Expansion of the KSB Web Shop is one of the goals set. Currently, customers can already order 3,000 products and 500,000 spare parts online. In addition, the SAP R/3 software will be implemented in all European production companies. More than ten legacy systems are scheduled to be replaced over the next three years.
Source: KSB SE & Co. KGaA