2018 was a very successful year for the Liebherr Group. For the first time in our company’s history, we achieved revenues of over € 10 billion, a milestone for our family-run business. Most divisions – especially Earthmoving, Mobile Cranes and Mining – experienced very strong growth. We were very pleased with last year’s robust order book which has continued to grow since the start of this year. Our company is charting a very steady course.
We want to sincerely thank our customers and business partners for the confidence they have placed in our company over the past year. We are proud to have reliably served all our partners, many of whom we have worked alongside for many years. This year, we will continue to work hard to drive forward new technologies to benefit our partners.
We would not be in the strong position we are in today without the tireless commitment, enthusiasm and creativity of our 46,000-plus employees across the globe. We want to take this opportunity to express our sincere gratitude for all their hard work.
One strong driver for growth is to tap into the synergies that exist within our various divisions and industries. This led us in 2018 to establish a centralised programme for coordinating research and development projects and continuing to promote strong innovation within the Group.
The numerous development projects our teams are currently working on prove that innovation is very high on our agenda. We are collaborating with prestigious partners to develop solutions for the networked and automated construction site of tomorrow. We are also working to promote e-mobility by developing our electric turbo compressor for fuel-cell-powered vehicles. In our aerospace division, we achieved our first success in our research into additive manufacturing processes by delivering our first mass-produced 3D-printed component.
We can only meet the high standards we set for quality and innovation by thinking ahead and continually investing. In Kirchdorf an der Iller (Germany), we founded a new development and exhibition centre. This facility is the only one of its kind in Europe and will be used to test innovative prototypes of new construction machines and material-handling machinery on a 1.2-km track. We have also invested in new production lines for large engines in Bulle (Switzerland) and we are tapping into new growth opportunities in Colmar, France. At the port of Rostock in Germany, Liebherr has started to install the most powerful land-based heavy-duty crane in the world. The TCC 78000 will be used to load Liebherr cranes and will also be available for other companies at the port of Rostock to use for heavy-lifting operations.
We can look forward to the forthcoming financial year with a great deal of confidence. According to the latest projections, the upswing in the global economy is expected to continue. We kicked off the year with a healthy order book, and we are planning to launch numerous new products and solutions onto the market. In light of all these factors we expect to see further revenue growth, and our workforce is very likely to continue growing.
We anticipate that 2019 will be another successful year. We hope that you will find our annual report an interesting and inspiring read.
Dr. h. c. Dipl.-Kfm. Isolde Liebherr, Dr. h. c. Dipl.-Ing. (ETH) Willi Liebherr
Presiding Committee of the administrative board of Liebherr-International AG