Benteler International AG Business Report FY ended Dec. 2012

Business Highlights

Financial Overview

(in million EUR)
  FY ended Dec. 31, 2012 FY ended Dec. 31, 2011 Rate of change
Net Sales 7,452 7,106 4.9 1)
Operating Income 122.0 178.9 (31.8) 2)
Automotive Division
Sales 5,879 5,561 5.7 3)

1) Net Sales
-The Company had net sales of EUR 7,452 million in 2012, an increase of 4.9% over 2011. This was due to increased revenue in the Automotive and Steel/Tube divisions and was offset by decreased sales from the Distribution division.

2) Operating Income
-The Company's operating income decreased 31.8% from 2011 down to EUR 122 million in 2012. This was due to declining volumes in the series business for the Automotive division, especially in Europe, as well as operational problems at specific plants. Provisions for the restructuring of the Automotive division also contributed to the decrease in income. 

3) Automotive Division
-In 2012, the Company's Automotive division generated sales of EUR 5,879 million, an increase of 5.7% from 2011. This sales increase occurred in spite of a decrease in series calls from customers, as it was compensated by more nonseries business. Revenue also increased from the Company passing on higher purchase prices from the rising cost of raw materials such as steel. 


-A division of the Company, Benteler Automotive, acquired Norwegian company Farsund Aluminium Casting AS (FAC). FAC is a supplier of aluminum low-pressure die castings for the automotive industry and employed 200 people at the time of acquisition. FAC's sales turnover in 2011 was EUR 38 million. The FAC product lines of front and rear knuckles, chassis sub-frames, and trailing arms were added to the product range of Benteler Automotive. (From a press release on September 2012)


-At the beginning of 2013, the Company's Automotive division merged the Chassis and Modules Product Group into a single product group in order to expand the module business alongside the traditional components business.

-The Company has launched a restructuring program for its Automotive division in order to improve its earnings for the future. The Company will streamline its indirect and overhead structures and processes, eliminating 1,800 jobs worldwide, including 500 in Germany. Furthermore, the Company will seek strategic partners for four plants around the world, two in Europe, and one each in North and South America. All of these measures are expected to be completed by the end of 2013.


R&D Expenditure

(in million EUR)
  FY ended Dec. 31, 2012 FY ended Dec. 31, 2011 FY ended Dec. 31, 2010
Overall 107.6 106.8 109.5

R&D Structure

-The Company has over 1,200 employees working in research and development in 32 locations over 18 countries.

-Research and development activities concentrate particularly on lightweight construction through the development, design and production of composite structural parts and aluminum components.

Product Development

Concept heavy-duty hybrid truck
-Together with Remy International, Inc., the Company announced the completion of a project to develop a new concept heavy-duty hybrid truck for MAN called the "Metropolis". MAN enlisted the Company as the systems integrator for the vehicle. The "Metropolis" will use Remy's HVH410 electric traction motor and generator and is capable of performing heavy-duty transport tasks, such as refuse collection, without emissions or significant noise. The "Metropolis" was presented at the IAA 2012 Commercial Vehicles Motor Show in Hannover, Germany. (From a press release on August 27, 2012)

<Composite materials>
-In 2012, the Company's Automotive division launched a project to investigate the capabilities and methods of combining various materials such as high-strength steel, aluminum, and fiber-reinforced plastic. The aim of the project is to able to provide lightweight solutions in mixed constructions, at an attractive cost, for vehicles produced in high volumes.

<Crash boxes>
-The Structures Product Group from the Company's Automotive division has started production on tubes to be used as crash box components, which were previously made of sheet metal. The new crash box consists of a single, coated, thin-walled, laser-welded steel tube.

Investment Activities

Capital Expenditure

(in million EUR)
  FY ended Dec. 31, 2012 FY ended Dec. 31, 2011 FY ended Dec. 31, 2010
Overall 444 386 247
Automotive division 335 286  209

-Out of the EUR 444 million used in capital expenditures, the Company spent EUR 429 million for the purchase of property, plant and equipment, while EUR 15 million was used for acquiring intangible assets.

-EUR 182 million of the EUR 335 million invested by the Automotive division was used for project-specific investments and for production facilities and equipment.

-The Company has invested in 28 new production facilities over the past 10 years in Asia, the Americas, Africa and Europe.

Investment Within Austria

-The Company announced the inauguration of a new production facility in Ort im Innkreis, Austria by Benteler-SGL GmbH, a joint venture between the Company and SGL Group. The 45,000 square meter facility will manufacture composite components in serial production for the automotive industry starting in the middle of 2013. The facility will produce body shell components such as side blades, doors and visible carbon components. Benteler-SGL has invested a total of  EUR 36 million in the new facility. (From a press release on October 22, 2012)

Investment Outside Austria

-The Company announced that it hosted an opening ceremony for its new production plant in Cayirova-Kocaeli, Turkey, called Benteler Gebze Tasit Sanayi ve Ticaret Ltd. Sti. The plant is 8,500 square meters, has 83 employees, and will supply Ford and Renault with hot-stamped structural parts, such as A and B-pillars, rockers, crash systems and door reinforcements.  (From a press release on June 8, 2012)