Airbus Group (until now EADS) is a worldwide leader in aerospace, defence and related services. On January 2014, the company was renamed “Airbus Group” in order to drive integration and cohesion using the globally recognised Airbus brand. From 2 January 2014, the company will be listed under Airbus Group with the new symbol “AIR”. The Group’s shares are listed in France, Germany and Spain. Also from 2014 onwards, the Group will integrate Airbus Military, Astrium and Cassidian into one Defence and Space Division. The Group will consist of Airbus, which, as a global manufacturer of the most innovative commercial aircraft, will be responsible for all commercial aircraft activities; Airbus Defence and Space, which will be responsible for the Group’s defence and space activities by pooling Airbus Military, Astrium and Cassidian; and Airbus Helicopters, which will comprise all commercial and military helicopter activities. This integration is the Group’s response to the changing market environment, which is characterised by flat or even shrinking defence and space budgets in the Western hemisphere. This structural change will provide optimised market access, cost and market synergies and improved competitiveness overall, and is designed to support the Group’s target to improve shareholder returns.
The Group’s global strategy aims to pave the way for profitable growth. In 2013, EADS carried out a review of its strategy. Consequently, and in addition to the decisions mentioned in the first paragraph, a dividend policy will be formalised that demonstrates a strong commitment to shareholder returns by targeting sustainable growth with a payout ratio of 30% to 40%. The company has also reaffirmed its overall target of a 10% return on sales by 2015 for EBIT before one-off. The Group is also aiming to be above breakeven for free cash flow in 2014 and 2015. In order to obtain access to new markets and technological resources, the Group’s activities are focused on increasing its international footprint, by realising up to 40% of its purchases outside Europe. Besides the important European and US markets, the Airbus Group’s target is to establish a third, robust pillar in the emerging countries in order to respond to the strong growth in these nations’ activities. These important steps will also protect the Group from the unavoidable cycles of business and the fluctuating euro-dollar exchange rate, while at the same time increasing profitability in the long term.
Airbus Group – known as EADS until 1 January 2014 – was created in 2000 by the merger of the German company DaimlerChrysler Aerospace AG, the French company Aérospatiale Matra and the Spanish company Construcciones Aeronáuticas – CASA -, S.A. Currently, the Group is a paradigm of a really successful European company. With an accumulated order intake of more than € 1,051 billion since 2000, the Group’s backlog more than quadrupled by the end of 2012 to € 566.5 billion. At the same time, the Group has more than doubled its revenues from € 24.2 billion in 2000 to € 56.5 billion in 2012.
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