Despite declining turnover in the construction machine and mining area, Liebherr Group’s turnover in 2014 almost reached the same level as 2013. Overall turnover was expected to be 8.866 billion euros, a drop of about 98 million euros or 1% on 2013.
In the area of construction machines and mining, Liebherr expects a turnover of approximately 5.374 billion euros which is a decline of 256 million euros or 4.5%. This decline results above all from the weakness of the global mining industry. The group’s construction machinery and mining area comprises the earthmoving, mobile crane, tower crane, concrete technology and mining divisions. Turnover in the mining division, in particular, has fallen considerably.
For the divisions beyond this area, an overall growth is expected. By the end of the year, forecasts indicate that the turnover there will be 3.492 billion euros, representing an increase of 158 million euros or about 5%. The divisions in question are maritime cranes, aerospace and transportation systems, machine tools and automation systems, domestic appliances as well as other products and services, the latter including the driveline and control-system components division. Especially turnover from the maritime cranes division and from other products and services has developed very pleasingly.
The business year has been gratifying for the group in Western Europe. In most other sales regions, however, Liebherr recorded a decline in turnover. Particularly in the Far East/Australia region as well as in the Near and Middle East, the level of dynamism has been very low. In Africa and America, on the other hand, the turnover for the entire year is anticipated to almost reach the previous year’s level.
In the business year, the Group once again invested heavily in production, sales and service – the total amount of investment was 820 million euros.
In Bulle, Switzerland, the group will expand its production site for diesel and gas engines in the next six years. The development centre and the production facilities are to be extended during this period, and a logistics centre and a training centre are to be built. The overall amount of investment is 160 million euros.
Another large investment project is the construction of a branch factory for components of drive and control technology in Biberach an der Riss, Germany. Initially, two production halls, each with more than 10,000 square metres of floor space, and an office building will be built on a 14.5 hectare lot. The new production plant, in which switchgear, electric motors and generators are to be developed and manufactured in future, will be opened in the course of the coming year. The investment volume is about 50 million euros.
One further big investment project is the construction of a new logistics centre near Kirchdorf an der Iller, Germany. From early 2015, this will be the base from which spare parts for Liebherr earthmoving machinery will be supplied around the world. The investment volume for the first phase of construction, which is about to be completed, is in excess of 115 million euros.
In Adelaide, Australia, the sales and service organization for construction machines and mining equipment has completed its expansion plans. A large component reconditioning centre measuring 16,000 square metres as well as a warehouse and logistics centre with an area of 12,000 square metres have been completed. The amount of investment was about 60 million euros.
The number of employees in the group continued to increase in 2014. By the end of 2014, the Liebherr companies employed about 41,000 people around the world. Compared with the 2013 figure, the number of employees has risen by more than 1800.