vol 6, issue 12

Siemens on track after solid performance

13 December 2011
By Sean Davies
Share |
Q4 revenue by region

Siemens sees strong growth in emerging markets

Rainer Graumann

Rainer Graumann: seeing what surgeons really need

Siemens turns to emerging markets to offset slow growth elsewhere.

The results of a company the size and scope of Siemens are always a good test as to market conditions, but with the Eurozone currently balancing on the edge of another financial meltdown this year’s figures are particularly interesting. The fact that the performance of the German-headquartered global giant failed to provide a remedy for the financial gloom drew the ire of many financial commentators, but stripping away the expectations they highlight a solid performance.

In its fiscal fourth quarter, which ended on 30 September, overall sales grew nearly 5 per cent to €20.35bn, but emerging markets rose 8 per cent to contribute €7.235bn to that total. Revenue in the Europe, Middle East and Africa region, by contrast, rose only 3 per cent.

With more than a third of the company’s revenue derived from emerging markets it is cushioned against the stalled growth in the global economy, allowing it to ride out the Eurozone crisis.

“The macroeconomic environment continues to be highly volatile and difficult to assess,” said Siemens CEO Peter Loscher. “The forecasts of experts have become more cautious. However, even the most recent forecasts call for global GDP growth of 3 per cent – in other words, growth roughly at last year’s level.”

It is clear that the global economy is moving at two speeds. The growth forecast for industrial countries is at 1.4 per cent for 2012. For emerging countries it is four times as high, 5.6 per cent, and even higher for the BRIC countries at 6.8 per cent. Loscher acknowledged that the company is already seeing signs of a slowdown among customers.

“Yet it is clear that we are also benefiting from the dynamic growth in emerging countries. There are many places in the world – from Istanbul to Asia and Latin America – where the daily news is not dominated by crisis summits and emergency measures but by growing self-confidence, by successes, and by rising expectations. And all these places are home to Siemens customers and to Siemens. Our growth rates there are above average. Against this backdrop, Siemens will continue to grow faster than the global economy.”

For a company that makes a diversified portfolio of products from trains to renewable energy plants you would expect a varied level of performance and that is certainly true.

Over the year the industry and energy sectors delivered an especially strong performance; both grew new orders at a double-digit rate. The industry sector increased earnings by 36 per cent to €3.6bn, buoyed by the huge order from Deutsche Bahn for ICx trains – the biggest in the history of the company. However, the industry automation and drive technologies divisions also contributed significantly to the success of the sector.

The energy sector increased new order volume too – by 15 per cent to about €34.8bn for the year, despite uncertainty in the nuclear sector post-Fukushima and disappointing performance in renewable energy.

“[With] renewable energy, our expectations have not yet been met in the area of solar thermal power because regulatory conditions have deteriorated and projects delayed,” Loscher said. “However, the progress being made in the first Desertec projects shows this market does have a future. This year, our wind business won its first order for an offshore wind park in China, which is a milestone in our entry into the world’s largest wind energy market.”

The healthcare sector picture is mixed. “The strength of the imaging business, which has been able to maintain its leading market position, contrasts sharply with the operational challenges at the diagnostics business. In the pioneering area of particle therapy, the time is not yet ripe for the broad commercial deployment of this highly innovative technology.”

Share |

Healthcare: Driven by innovation

Siemens increased its investment in R&D by €500m in 2011, and over the past decade it has doubled R&D personnel. It also presents awards to its top innovators. One of those honoured in November was Dr Rainer Graumann, who works on medical imaging techniques and surgical navigation systems.

In the past, surgeons carrying out minimally invasive skeletal operations had to laboriously correlate marker points on a previously-prepared image of the patient with corresponding points on the area to be operated on.

Graumann searched for a way to make this task faster and more accurate. Using the instrument he developed, the patient is scanned only as surgery begins. All that is needed is for the patient to be positioned so that the centre of the area to be operated on is exactly at the centre of the imaging device. This distance therefore becomes a known quantity. The reference points of the instruments and of the C-bow X-ray device are captured with a stereo camera, and this data is used to generate constantly updated images of the patient showing the changing positions of the surgeon’s instruments.

The system enables surgeons to position implants, artificial joints and screws. It can also be used in neurosurgery and operations on the face. Graumann is happy to observe surgical procedures in person. “That enables me to see for myself what the surgeons really need,” he says.

Related forum discussions
forum comment To start a discussion topic about this article, please log in or register.    

Latest Issue

E&T cover image 1604

"Should the UK's engineers be in or out of Europe? The IET sets out its official position on the EU referendum this week - will you agree?"

->

E&T jobs

  • Solutions Engineer

    Bristol Water
    • United Kingdom
    • £41,000 - 49,000

    We serve a population of over one million people and all the associated businesses in an area of 1,000 square miles centered on Bristol.

    • Recruiter: Bristol Water

    Apply for this job

  • Senior Mechanical Engineer

    Bristol Water
    • United Kingdom
    • £41,000 - 49,000

    We serve a population of over one million people and all the associated businesses in an area of 1,000 square miles centered on Bristol.

    • Recruiter: Bristol Water

    Apply for this job

  • Software Renewals Manager

    BAE Systems
    • Preston, Lancashire, England
    • Negotiable

    Software Renewals Manager Would you like to work in a resourceful and developing role within IT Services? We currently have a vacancy for a Software Renewals Manager at our site in Preston Channel Way. As a Software Renewals Manager, you will be responsi

    • Recruiter: BAE Systems

    Apply for this job

  • Technical Manager

    Aggregate Industries
    • Hulland Ward, Ashbourne
    • Attractive salary plus comprehensive benefits

    A key Technical Manager role driving product improvement and compliance with Aggregate Industries, market leader in Construction Solutions.

    • Recruiter: Aggregate Industries

    Apply for this job

  • Field Application Engineer

    Intel
    • Madrid

    Responsible for giving product presentations to the customer describing how Intel products provide the optimum solution to their application.

    • Recruiter: Intel

    Apply for this job

  • Engineers and Scientists

    European Patent Office
    • Munich and The Hague
    • See job description

    We are looking for Engineers and scientists in various technical fields for our locations in Munich and The Hague.

    • Recruiter: European Patent Office

    Apply for this job

  • Director of Product Management

    EMS Recruitment Group
    • West Yorkshire
    • Circa £70,000 PA + car allowance, excellent benefits including lucrative bonus scheme

    Our client is the undoubted world leader in their field. A highly innovative and progressive specialist electro-mechanical product manufacturer....

    • Recruiter: EMS Recruitment Group

    Apply for this job

  • Electrical Engineer

    Premium job

    Scottish Prison Service
    • Edinburgh, City of Edinburgh
    • £40,654 to £48,579 plus annual supplement of £10,000

    Build Your Engineering Career. The Scottish Prison Service (SPS) is an Agency of the Scottish Government, working in partnership.....

    • Recruiter: Scottish Prison Service

    Apply for this job

  • Sales Electronics Engineer

    Premium job

    Precision Microdrives
    • London (Greater)
    • £25,000 - £30,000 starting salary, inclusive of on-target commissions.

    Precision Microdrives (PMD) is a fast growing technology company that designs, produces and trades miniature electro-mechanical mechanisms

    • Recruiter: Precision Microdrives

    Apply for this job

  • Installation and Commissioning Engineer

    Premium job

    Crest Solutions
    • Corby
    • Competitive

    You will be involved in installation, commissioning & servicing of printing and machine vision related solutions.

    • Recruiter: Crest Solutions

    Apply for this job

More jobs ▶

Subscribe

Choose the way you would like to access the latest news and developments in your field.

Subscribe to E&T