GE announced today strong fourth-quarter 2010 earnings from continuing operations (attributable to GE) of $3.9 billion, or .36 per share, up 33% from the fourth quarter of 2009. Revenues grew to $41.4 billion for the quarter, the company’s first positive growth in nine quarters.
“GE ended 2010 with three consecutive quarters of strong earnings growth,” GE Chairman and CEO Jeff Immelt said. “Industrial segment revenue was up 4%, with Industrial organic growth of 6%. Fourth quarter orders grew 12% year-over-year, with a 20% increase in equipment and a 5% expansion in services. Importantly, overall orders in Energy Infrastructure grew 4%. Total company backlog in the quarter increased $3.1 billion to a record $175 billion.
“Strong performance at GE Capital was also encouraging,” Immelt said. “Fourth-quarter net income of $1.1 billion was up $1.0 billion from a year ago. Volume grew 30% in the quarter at good margins. Losses and impairments declined .3 billion from the third quarter of 2010 to $2.5 billion, and we saw improvement in delinquencies across the businesses.
“We continue to operate GE with discipline and rigor,” Immelt said. “Cash generated from GE Industrial operating activities totaled $4.6 billion in the quarter and $14.7 billion for the year. At yearend, we had $79 billion of consolidated cash and equivalents. Strong fourth-quarter Industrial margins (ex. NBCU) of 17.5%, up 10 bps year-over-year, reflect that GE is delivering on operations even as we increase investment in R&D, which was up 21% for the full year.”
Key Industrial wins in the quarter included more than $5.8 billion in commercial aviation service and equipment orders and over $3 billion in long-term service contracts with LAN, Cathay, COMAC and Delta, among others; more than $750 million in contracts from India’s Reliance Power for powergeneration technology to help expand the Samalkot power plant in Andhra Pradesh; agreements worth $700 million for power-generation equipment and services for the new high-efficiency Riyadh PP11 power plant in Saudi Arabia; and a $500 million contract with Saudi Aramco to supply a broad range of equipment and services for an expansion of the Shaybah gas-oil processing facilities.
“GE continued executing a balanced capital-allocation plan in the fourth quarter with strategic acquisitions that augment core Industrial capabilities,” Immelt said. “In the last 90 days of 2010: GE Healthcare completed its $580 million acquisition of Clarient, a leading player in the fast-growing molecular diagnostics sector; GE Oil & Gas announced its intent to acquire, for $1.3 billion, Wellstream Holdings PLC, a leading engineer and manufacturer of high-quality flexible pipeline products for oil and gas transportation in the subsea production industry; GE Energy announced its intended $3 billion acquisition of Dresser, Inc., a global energy infrastructure technology and service provider. Earlier this month, GE Energy also announced the proposed acquisition of Lineage Power Holdings Inc. for $520 million, which will enhance our capabilities in Smart Grid and Data Centers energy management.
“In addition, in December, we announced the second dividend increase in six months, for a total improvement of 40% versus the beginning of the year,” Immelt said. “And since restarting the share buyback program mid-year, we repurchased $1.8 billion in stock.”
Source: GE, January 21, 2011;