Peter Marks, chairman, president and CEO, Robert Bosch LLC and member of the Bosch Board of Management said, ”We are keenly aware of looming uncertainties that could affect growth of the world economy. We expect the consequences of the unfortunate events in Japan will have a temporary effect. Yet, we remain confident that Bosch is on solid footing to shoulder the impact and achieve further growth. Our sights are set on sustained innovative strength, a continued focus on diversification and pursuit of new business areas and opportunities in North America.” Bosch plans to generate 20 percent or more of its sales in the Americas mid-term.
Positive headcount development
The U.S. economic recovery and the upturn particularly in the automotive sector were key drivers of Bosch’s strong 2010 regional result. All three business sectors significantly increased their sales in 2010. This positive development is also reflected within the company’s regional employment. In 2010, the number of Bosch associates working throughout the U.S., Canada and Mexico increased 8 percent to some 22,000 (2009: 20,350).
”The know-how, determination and resiliency of our associates in the region are critical assets in our return to growth,” stated Marks. Bosch intends to increase the number of associates in North America by 1,000 in 2011. Worldwide, the number of Bosch associates is expected to rise by 15,000 to reach some 300,000 by yearend.
Continued investment fuels future growth
Bosch continues positioning itself for growth through investment in acquisitions and capital expenditures, equivalent to 5 percent of the Group’s revenue. The U.S. remains the second largest market for Bosch worldwide, and more than $150 million was invested in North American activities in 2010. With its acquisition of RTI Technologies Co., Ltd. in December 2010, Bosch expands its development and distribution of automotive maintenance equipment, particularly air conditioning service (ACS) machines. Affirming commitment to its regional manufacturing footprint, last year Bosch announced a five-year, $125-million investment in its Charleston, S.C. site, an action expected to create nearly 300 new jobs in the Automotive Technology sector. Present in Mexico since 1955, Bosch invested $27 million there in 2010, and inaugurated its new headquarters in Mexico City in April 2011, featuring a state-of-the-art training facility that will help serve the local needs of clients, technicians and distributors. In 2011, Bosch Group intends to spend more than 7 billion euros (over $9 billion) globally to safeguard its future.
Growth in all business sectors with focus on energy-efficiency
In Automotive Technology, Bosch in North America recorded significant sales of $5.6 billion in 2010, 24 percent more than in the previous year (2009: $4.5 billion). Apart from solid capacity utilization as a result of the industry’s recovery, the company strengthened its position as a leading automotive supplier, with high-quality products that reduce fuel consumption, and increase safety and driver comfort. SB LiMotive, the joint venture of Samsung SDI and Bosch, will supply lithium-ion battery packs for the Fiat 500EV, scheduled for launch in 2012 for the U.S. subcompact passenger vehicle market. In January 2010, Bosch was selected by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to lead a project to develop a high compression, turbocharged engine. This project will be partially funded by a $12 million grant to support the Advanced Combustion Controls — Enabling Systems and Solutions (ACCESS) for high efficiency light-duty vehicles, boosting engine fuel economy up to 30 percent by late 2014. Increased demand among automakers and end consumers alike for fuel-efficient technologies will continue to benefit Bosch in the near-term.
The region’s Industrial Technology sector achieved the highest rate of growth, growing its 2010 sales by more than 33 percent to $1.2 billion (2009: $0.9 billion). In 2010, the cumulative installed capacity of wind power, photovoltaics and concentrated solar power in the U.S. could power roughly 200,000 homes.
Bosch Rexroth and Bosch Solar Energy are well positioned to leverage this continuing development. In December 2010, Bosch completed its first on-site installation of several hundred ground-mount solar panels in the U.S. At Bosch’s Proving Ground in Flat Rock, Mich., the system, developed by Bosch Solar Energy and Bosch Rexroth, spans 15,000 square feet, generating 63,400 kilowatt hours of electricity per year, nearly enough to power eight U.S. homes for 12 months each. Bosch Rexroth recently announced it will supply hydraulic system solutions for the modernization and expansion of the Panama Canal, scheduled to open during the waterway’s 100-year anniversary in 2014.
In Consumer Goods and Building Technology, Bosch in North America achieved growth of roughly 5 percent to some $2 billion in 2010 (2009: $1.9 billion). Despite continued weakness in the construction industry, the company sees increased demand for energy-efficient, high performance power tools, heating technology, home appliances and security systems. 2010 debuted the Dremel Trio™, the first multifunctional tools of its kind, with the functionality of a spiral jigsaw, edge sander and detail router. Comprehensive federal and state incentives continue to generate demand for Bosch’s geothermal heat pumps, tankless water heaters, solar thermal water heaters and boilers. In March, Bosch Home Appliances, part of the company’s 50-50 joint venture Bosch and Siemens Home Appliance Group (BSH), received the highest honor awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Agency, the 2011 ENERGY STAR® Award for Sustained Excellence. Bosch is the only U.S. appliance manufacturer with entire product lines of ENERGY STAR qualified dishwashers, washers and refrigerators.
Research and development activities stayed strong
Some 45 percent of Bosch Group’s research and development (R&D) expenditure (2010 total expenditure: 3.8 billion euros, over $5 billion) focuses on technologies that conserve resources and protect the environment. With more than 34,000 associates working globally in R&D, 1,800 Bosch researchers are located in North America. ”We are committed to the development of smart solutions that truly benefit our customers,” said Peter Marks. ”It is our intent to leverage our vast technological competence to help solve market challenges.”
At its Research and Technology Center (RTC) locations in Palo Alto, Calif., Pittsburgh, Pa., and Cambridge, Mass., Bosch researchers focus on a variety of areas including software engineering, human machine interface, autonomous systems, energy conversion and storage. In 2010, Bosch was selected by Willow Garage, Inc. to receive a Personal Robot 2 (PR2). The two-year research program is designed to advance personal robotics through collaboration within the technical robotics community. Also, Bosch partnered with DuPont®, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and 3M™ to develop longer-lasting, less expensive solutions to store clean energy.
The collaboration was awarded a $1.6 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Agency — Energy GRIDS Program, aimed to improve the operation of the electric grid.
Bosch Healthcare continues to expand its regional leadership in telehealth systems, and was recently awarded a new contract for its Health Buddy system by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). The at-home monitoring system, which allows patients to actively monitor their health and give providers an opportunity to intervene before a patient’s condition becomes critical, has been in use for more than ten years. Seeing great potential in the interconnective ”internet of things”, the company has extended its portfolio of services. Bosch Software Innovations supplies software and system solutions for several industries, from financial services providers to mobility and energy infrastructure managers.
125 Years of Bosch Innovation
In 2011, the Bosch Group celebrates its own 125th anniversary, as well as the 150th anniversary of company founder Robert Bosch’s birth. For 125 years, Bosch has been steadfast in its quest to provide novel, beneficial technological solutions that meet market needs. A pioneer in globalization, Bosch, by 1913, sold products on every continent, and generated more sales in the U.S. than in Europe. To commemorate these milestones, several associate events in the U.S., Canada and Mexico — as well as in every other region – will be held during the year.
In the U.S., Canada and Mexico, the Bosch Group manufactures and markets automotive original equipment and aftermarket products, industrial drives and control technology, power tools, security and communication systems, packaging technology, thermotechnology, household appliances, solar energy, healthcare and software innovations. Having established a regional presence in 1906, Bosch employs over 22,000 associates in more than 100 locations, with reported sales of $8.8 billion in fiscal 2010. For more information, visit www.boschusa.com.
The Bosch Group is a leading global supplier of technology and services. In the areas of automotive and industrial technology, consumer goods, and building technology, some 285,000 associates generated sales of 47.3 billion euros ($62.7 billion) in fiscal 2010. The Bosch Group comprises Robert Bosch GmbH and its more than 350 subsidiaries and regional companies in over 60 countries. If its sales and service partners are included, then Bosch is represented in roughly 150 countries. This worldwide development, manufacturing, and sales network is the foundation for further growth. Bosch spent 3.8 billion euros (approximately $5 billion) for research and development in 2010, and applied for over 3,800 patents worldwide. With all its products and services, Bosch enhances the quality of life by providing solutions which are both innovative and beneficial. Bosch is celebrating its 125th anniversary in 2011.