ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
TUV - Balance Sheet Press Conference on 16 April 2007
TUV recently opted for a surprising and innovative approach. The campaign is directed at decision-makers in industry, trade, government agencies and professional associations -- the group for whom we wish to strengthen our market profile as a process partner adding value for customers. The advertisement campaign consistently follows the approach launched in our corporate video, by highlighting technical subjects from an unusual perspective. Paula May's shoulder, Peter Will's heart, Andrea Stern's lips or Daniel Scheffel's hand once again stand for the people from TÜV SÜD who add value for their customers.
TUV’s success in fiscal 2006 is proof that the market appreciates our role as "added value" partner. Key headlines from TUV’s point of view are:
• We closed our 2006 business year with the fourth consecutive record result, and thus once again with the best result in our 140-year history.
• We generated a two-digit increase in sales of just under 13%, adding up to almost € 1.2 billion.
• Our pre-tax result climbed to € 126.2 million, a plus of over 14 per cent.
• In spite of high future-oriented investments, our adjusted return on sales decreased only slightly to 9.7 per cent.
• TÜV SÜD is thus not only the largest, but also the highest-revenue TÜV organization.
As in previous years, we also pride ourselves on achieving this record result without any loss of jobs. Quite the contrary, in fact: We succeeded in creating over 500 new jobs in our own right. Additionally, this year we are again enabling our employees to share directly in the success of our group by paying high performance bonuses, which add up to almost four per cent of consolidated sales.
Over the first few months of fiscal 2007, we have succeeded in continuing our meteoric rise. As you know, we are striving to achieve annual organic growth of a minimum of 6 per cent. After the first three and a half months I can proudly say that we are on track to meet this target.
TÜV SÜD is on track. The market has confirmed our strategy, which is based on a strong brand image and basically targets the three dimensions of "new technologies", "new sectors" and "new regions".
From this basis, we intend to use our own power to
• achieve profitable growth,
Additionally, we aim to assert our position against our competitors by offering maximum quality, flexibility and promptness.
How are our business units positioned on the market?
While TÜV SÜD Industry Services has positioned itself as the leading provider of engineering services that ensure safe and reliable operation and optimization of industrial plants and systems, buildings and infrastructural facilities, and thus supports both manufacturers and operators equally, TÜV SÜD Chemical Services is the industry specialist in technical safety of plants and systems subject to regulatory supervision and inspection for the chemical and pharmaceutical industry. From its Leverkusen-based headquarters, the business unit also focuses on the Chinese market where the chemical industry is facing major challenges, particularly concerning, safety, availability and environmental protection. By acquiring U.S. testing service provider PetroChem Inspection Services Inc., headquartered in Houston, Texas, TÜV SÜD Chemical Services has succeeded in driving ahead internationalization and has tripled its worldwide pool of specialists providing services in the chemical industry. PetroChem's portfolio covers material and safety-related testing and inspection of plants, installations and systems as well as environmental tests. PetroChem Inspection Services Inc. employs approximately 400 staff, generating annual sales of roughly USD 35 million.
TÜV Product Services is among the key players on the international market whenever products must be tested and approved before they are placed on the market. More and more frequently, TÜV SÜD's product specialists accompany the entire added-value chain from design to delivery. The benefits for manufacturers and retailers: maximum quality assurance and a significantly reduced risk of defects and failures and the liability associated therewith.
Five million roadworthiness tests. Two million exhaust emissions tests. 700,000 driving tests. These are impressive figures representing TÜV Auto Services' core business in 2006. 75 per cent of the € 380 million in annual sales were generated by these traditional services. Peripheral services already account for 25 per cent – and rising. Against this backdrop, TÜV SÜD Auto Services has set itself clear objectives: to make traditional business profitable, develop new services and export core products throughout the world. The company has been re-structured accordingly: by establishing "Key Account and Manufacturer Services", the business unit caters to nationwide vehicle and vehicle part manufacturers, car dealerships and megadealers, leasing companies, insurance companies and other financial service providers which increasingly demand supra-regional services, including workshop quality tests, lease return inspection reports, vehicle valeting and verification of manufacturer standards.
Following a phase marked by consolidation and the development and market launch of new products, TÜV SÜD Automotive is now also steering for growth. As engineering partner of the automotive industry, the business unit has consolidated know-how in its two engineering centres based in Garching near Munich and Mlada Boleslav near the Czech capital Prague.
TÜV SÜD Rail has been operating as a separate business unit since 2005 and also has the green light for success. TÜV SÜD rail experts provide services in almost all countries which are extending their rail networks and add up to quite a few: Italy, the Netherlands, Austria, Switzerland, the UK, Sweden, Spain, Taiwan and the Philippines. TÜV SÜD Rail verifies the functionality and safety of rolling stock, signal engineering and rail infrastructure. Services range from third-party safety testing to approval management for entire track sections including servicing and maintenance work.
What do the secondary school in Friesenheim, financial institute Commerzbank, travel company TUI, Munich Airport, BKK health insurance scheme in Scheufelen and numerous German LASIK clinics have in common? They have all been certified by TÜV SÜD Management Services. Certification allows companies to distinguish themselves from competitors by offering special service quality, documenting efficient processes or protecting themselves against special risks, for example. TÜV SÜD Management Services has developed from a certification body to a problem solver and process expert. The result: number one in the national certification sector and among the top ten players worldwide.
Medical, psychological and occupational health and safety support at work, in leisure time and road traffic is the brief for the activities provided by TÜV SÜD Life Services. The specialists in this business unit provide integrated support for people in the modern work environment and – primarily on behalf of companies – develop customized solutions to handle stress, increase motivation at work or address risks of addiction as well as underchallenge and overchallenge. The doctors and psychologists of TÜV SÜD Life Services make people fit for the increasing demands they face at work and in ever more complex road traffic.
70,000 participants, 6,500 seminars in over 400 technology and management subjects, 60 conferences: TÜV SÜD Academy ranks among the top ten private training institutes in Germany. As a recognized partner providing initial and further training for industry, trade and commerce, TÜV SÜD Academy plans to develop from a primarily national training institute into a 'Europe Academy'. Initial steps in this direction have been taken. The most recent example being TÜV SÜD Academy's co-operation with the largest vocational training institute in Poland. TÜV SÜD Academy has also launched activities in Turkey.
This was a brief overview of our business units.
We consistently apply our economic strength to invest in the long-term sustainability of our organization and its jobs.
We invest in our brand.
TÜV SÜD and its "Add value" strategy is among the most successful players in this sector. Our customers appreciate our new market profile as a committed and responsible process partner, delivering enhanced certainty and thus adding economic value for customers throughout the world. TÜV SÜD has successfully developed to become a partner throughout the entire added-value chain, endeavouring on the basis of legal and own production standards to improve the availability of technical plants, installations and systems, optimize operating processes, minimize investment risks or ensure the rapid access of products to global trade markets.
We invest in new technologies
We work with PSB Group to tackle future technologies including biotechnology, genetic engineering, nanotechnology as well as pharmaceutics, microelectronics and telecommunications. By acquiring a holding in Ottobrunn-based Ludwig-Bölkow-Systemtechnik, we have specifically strengthened our renewable energy portfolio. Together with our partner, we plan to make the use of alternative energy carriers economically feasible, functional and safe. Pursuing the goal of developing and marketing special certification services for positioning and navigation systems, we joined forces with our partner, Braunschweig-based specialist company OECON, to found NavCert GmbH. As a member of the H2 Community, for example, we are playing an active role in establishing hydrogen as one of the energy carriers of tomorrow and building up a global hydrogen industry satisfying the highest ecological and economic standards.
We invest in new "Added value" services.
TÜV SÜD Industry Services counters further liberalization and deregulation by offering new products such as integrated building safety, certified grid control, complex energy consulting and validation of climate change projects governed by the Kyoto Protocol. Offering telemetric temperature measurement within the tire structure under full load and three-dimensional track measurement to simulate road-vehicle interaction, TÜV SÜD Automotive succeeded in winning new customers among automotive suppliers but also in motorsports. Thanks to new health-sector services and special certification offers such as "s@fer-shopping" or "ServiceQuality", TÜV SÜD Management Services is recording major sales growth. TÜV SÜD Life Services has developed a service package for integrated occupational health management which is in increasing demand. And the list of our innovations does not stop there.
Our services focus on our core competencies of consulting, testing, certification and training. Today, our focus has extended far beyond the traditional technical sector. We increasingly also support people at work. We provide further training to employees. We qualify them for special professions. We advise organizations on workplace design and work processes. We are aware that: particularly in our knowledge-based society, people are the critical factor for business success. The fact that we have succeeded in becoming an expert player in this new field and have positioned ourselves excellently is impressively demonstrated by sales development in our PEOPLE strategic business segment which increased by 28 per cent to € 178 million in the first full fiscal year after establishment of the strategic business segment.
We invest in new sectors
We develop special service packages for special sectors and thus firmly follow our industry focus. Based on this strategy, TÜV SÜD Industry Services is already catering to over 20 target groups. The same applies to TÜV SÜD Product Services and other TÜV SÜD companies. Sectors of industry include the chemical industry but also plant engineering, power suppliers, auto manufacturers and car dealers, airports, the rail industry, the defence sector, supermarkets, the food industry, power stations, hospitals, trade shows, fuel stations or training institutes.
We invest in new regions
By establishing TÜVTURK to carry out roadworthiness testing in Turkey, acquiring Singapore-based PSB Group with branches in many Asian countries and taking over EST Testing Solutions Inc., the Michigan (USA)-based provider of testing services, and Texas-based PetroChem Inspection Services, we have succeeded in further consolidating our international network. Today, TÜV SÜD is represented at approximately 700 major business locations worldwide. Our acquisition of the two U.S. companies has enabled us to tap sales potential of around € 75 million in the USA, making TÜV SÜD also the number one TÜV organization in the NAFTA region.
Preparations for taking over German-style vehicle roadworthiness inspection in Turkey are running at full speed ahead. After legal actions brought against the privatization procedure of the Turkish government were finally dismissed by the competent courts, TÜV SÜD and its partners DOGUS and AKFEN began to jointly build up a national network of almost 200 stationary service centres and 40 mobile test stations in Turkey. The prospects for TÜVTURK, the umbrella organization under which TÜV SÜD, DOGUS and AKFEN have bundled their activities, are excellent: Approximately 10 million motor vehicles are currently registered in Turkey, and according to industry forecasts, the number of vehicles will increase by approx. seven per cent annually.
The success of our activities is also reflected in the operating return on sales generated by our strategic business segments:
INDUSTRY 10.6 per cent,
In view of our balance sheet you may now wonder: what drives TÜV SÜD to consider merging with TÜV NORD? This question is all the more justified because we have frequently emphasized our stand-alone-strategy in the past. Let me answer this question as follows: Yes, TÜV SÜD could succeed on its own. We're strong enough to do so. Jointly with TÜV NORD, however, we could succeed even better, which basically is due to five reasons:
Firstly: The merger would allow us to better fend off attacks on our domestic market by national and international competitors which we expect from 2008 onward when industry business will be completely liberalized. As you are well aware, periodic testing and inspection of plants and installations falling under regulatory supervision and inspection will then no longer be performed only by German TÜV organizations but also by other appropriately approved providers. Our competitors have pointed out time and again that they do not intend to let this opportunity go by. We will be prepared.
Secondly: The merger would be another important step towards one united TÜV organization. The vision of a 'European TÜV' would not only cater to the protection of the TÜV brand, currently the subject of a heated legal debate, but would also reflect the market's perception of TÜV. In so far, the merger would sustainably strengthen our position on both the national and international market.
Thirdly: We would further consolidate our national and international network, thus satisfying supra-regional customer requirements even more effectively than before.
Fourthly: We could pool our resources and know-how .
Fifthly: We would avoid duplicated costs for investments, innovations and technologies
The good news: A few days ago, the Supervisory Boards of TÜV NORD and TÜV SÜD consented to drawing up an agreement in principle. Pending approval by the German antitrust authority, the agreement will set forth a binding commitment to the merger of the two companies by 1 January 2008 and define the pertinent milestones. Generating sales of around € 1.8 billion and with approx. 18,000 staff, the new company will become market leader in Germany and be represented almost nationwide, also in the industrial hub of North-Rhine Westphalia. Internationally, we would be number two at almost twice the size of TÜV Rheinland.
The name of the new company has not yet been decided on. Like many other issues, the name will have to be thoroughly discussed and developed over the next weeks and months.
In fiscal 2006, consolidated sales at TÜV SÜD increased by a total of 13 per cent from € 1.034 to
Approximately € 65 million of the total increase in sales of € 134 million are attributable to changes in the consolidated group, primarily in the form of acquisitions, such as Singapore-based PSB Group and Michigan (USA)-based provider of test services EST Testing Solutions Inc., Darmstadt-based APZ Auto-Pflege-Zentrum and MPU GmbH in Recklinghausen. Organic sales growth amounted to 6.6 per cent and was thus above budget.
Broken down by regions, sales are distributed as follows:
• Germany: 75.9 per cent,
While domestic sales rose by 7.4 per cent, sales growth averaged 35 per cent abroad. In the USA, sales increased by 50 and in Asia even by 72 per cent. Of course, company acquisitions also play a crucial role in these figures. Nevertheless: we generated organic growth of nine per cent in other European countries, 25 per cent in the Americas and ten per cent in Asia.
Sales generated abroad accounted for 24 per cent of total sales, an increase of four per cent over the 2005 figure. This is a clear improvement and means that we are rapidly approaching the 30 per cent mark we have set as our strategic goal.
The strategic business segments accounted for the following sales shares:
• INDUSTRY 47.2 per cent,
Generating a sales increase of € 64.7 million, or 13.3 per cent, the INDUSTRY strategic business segment accounted for the largest share in growth, mainly stemming from the TÜV SÜD Industry Services and TÜV SÜD Product Services business units, which also benefited from the acquisition of PSB Group.
After a 116 per cent increase in 2004 and 63 per cent growth in 2005, our pre-tax result improved by a further 14 per cent in 2006, from € 110.4 to 126.2 million -- marking another new record. In my opinion, this result speaks for itself, as it was achieved in spite of the advance costs connected with integration of the PSB Group, investments in new laboratories, above all in Asia, and increased personnel training costs within the scope of establishing the TÜV SÜD Chemical Services and TÜV SÜD Rail business units.
Investments in participations amounting to € 126 million and the associated charges in the form of 'purchase price allocations' – goodwill was still subject to linear depreciation in line with commercial accounting regulations in 2006 – resulted in a slight decrease in our adjusted return on sales from
Depending on the business unit, the operating return on sales ranged between 0.2 and 11.3 per cent in the year under review.
Our capital expenditures in intangible and tangible assets amounting to € 57.8 million slightly exceeded those of 2005, which came to € 57.3 million. Investments focused on real property and buildings, technical equipment and IT hardware and software licenses.
52 per cent of total capital expenditures were spent on domestic and 48 per cent on foreign TÜV SÜD subsidiaries.
In 2006, our Group employed an annual average of 10,863 'full-time equivalents' (FTEs) – a year-on-year increase of 1,216. In all fairness, I should point out, however, that 714 of these new FTEs originated from changes in the scope of consolidation, i.e. from acquisitions. Nevertheless: we created 502 new jobs in our own right, so to speak, 75 of them in Germany.
In 2006, the balance sheet total increased by 8.8 per cent, to € 1,432.5 million. € 94.2 million of the absolute increase of € 116 million were accounted for by intangible assets and € 30.5 million by tangible assets. As far as intangible assets are concerned, this development was mainly due to first-time application of "GAS 4 Accounting for Acquisitions in Consolidated Financial Statements". Goodwill from acquisitions was no longer netted against reserves in the balance sheet, as had formerly been the case; instead the differences were assigned to hidden reserves or charges. Any remaining amount was recognized as goodwill. In 2006, company acquisitions thus resulted in a total of € 91.1 million, mainly in the form of goodwill and intangible assets.
In fiscal 2006, cash flow, probably the best indicator of the TÜV SÜD Group's excellent performance, rose by € seven million, or 5.6 per cent, to € 122 million. The relatively moderate growth compared to net income is mainly due to the decrease in long-term accruals associated, amongst other things, with application of the new approximation method for valuing pension accruals and elimination of an accrual for indirect obligations.
Due to numerous company acquisitions and participations, liquid funds, including securities, shrank within acceptable limits, i.e. by 10 per cent, to € 666 million.
Pension obligations are fully covered by cash and cash equivalents and the capitalized value of reinsurance coverage.
TÜV SÜD is a financially healthy consolidated group without any financial debt. Our company is built on a solid foundation and has displayed impressive performance in past years. This strategy of profitable growth must be sustained. Financially, we are ideally equipped to face the challenges ahead. Nevertheless, cost structures will have to be subjected to continuous review to ensure their competitiveness. This applies all the more in view of further market liberalization as of 2008.
TÜV SÜD is, by the way, an impressive example of the fact that companies do not need to be listed on the stock exchange to be successful. What is important, of course, is to position and manage a company as if it was listed on the stock exchange -- exactly our approach at TÜV SÜD.
Our decision to align our accounting to international rules and adopt reporting as per IFRS from 2007 on is one proof of this approach. The required IFRS opening balance sheet effective at 1 January 2006 is available in audited form. The 2006 IFRS financial statement is currently being drawn up and audited. Last year's budget had already been prepared according to IFRS rules.
Another significant decision has already been implemented. In September, after conclusion of a contractual trust agreement (CTA), almost € 600 million were transferred retroactively, effective 1 January 2006, to the newly established TÜV SÜD Pension Trust e.V. This measure is another example of meaningful alignment with business practices of companies listed on the stock exchange.