The report focuses on the Company’s solid 2009 performance amid continued global economic pressure and its execution against four strategic priorities: keeping GE safe and secure; executing and positioning our infrastructure businesses to perform through the cycle; creating financial flexibility; and protecting our franchise and brand. The report also details a roadmap for GE’s renewal, characterized by: a simplified portfolio focused on infrastructure; investing in profitable growth; creating market solutions to tough societal problems; an energized and accountable team; and attractive growth in earnings, cash and returns.
The report consists of Chairman and CEO Jeff Immelt’s letter to investors; pictorial chapters on the key elements of the GE renewal model; a letter from the Board’s Presiding Director Ralph Larsen on the Company’s compensation philosophy; an overview on governance; and a comprehensive financial section. The online version features video stories about customers, including AEP and Petrobas.
“In 2008 – 09, a period many considered the most difficult economic crisis since the Great Depression, GE earned about $30 billion and generated $36 billion of cash. And we finished this period much stronger than we started,” GE Chairman and CEO Jeff Immelt writes in his letter. “The world has been reset. Today’s uncertainty feels like the ‘new normal.’ We will not return to the relative tranquility of the pre-crisis world. Growth will be harder to come by, trends will be more volatile and constituent voices will be louder. We see this environment as an opportunity to renew GE.
“GE is an innovative technology and services company that can solve some of the world’s most difficult problems, grow earnings and have substantial cash available to reinvest in the Company or return to shareowners. In the markets we have chosen, we will have a meaningful competitive advantage,” Immelt writes, driven by unique GE strengths that include broad technical leadership, service expansion, emerging-market growth, valuable partnerships, strategic financial services and a legacy of leadership development. “We expect 2010 earnings to be flat with 2009. In 2011 and beyond, we expect GE to generate solid earnings growth, even if the economic recovery is uneven. We will achieve this growth while generating substantial ‘free cash’ that could further enhance investor returns.”
GE has begun distributing more than four million reports and proxy statements in preparation for its annual shareowners meeting on Wednesday, April 28, 2010, in Houston, Texas.
“We worked hard during the crisis to prepare the Company for the future,” Immelt says. “We are emerging as a ‘Renewed GE,’ a company that is more competitive and positioned for long-term growth.”
GE (NYSE: GE) is a diversified infrastructure, finance and media company taking on the world’s toughest challenges. From aircraft engines and power generation to financial services, medical imaging, and television programming, GE operates in more than 100 countries and employs about 300,000 people worldwide. For more information, visit the company's Web site at www.ge.com.
Caution Concerning Forward-Looking Statements:
This document contains “forward-looking statements”- that is, statements related to future, not past, events. In this context, forward-looking statements often address our expected future business and financial performance and financial condition, and often contain words such as “expect,” “anticipate,” “intend,” “plan,” believe,” “seek,” “see,” or “will.” Forward-looking statements by their nature address matters that are, to different degrees, uncertain. For us, particular uncertainties that could cause our actual results to be materially different than those expressed in our forward-looking statements include: the severity and duration of current economic and financial conditions, including volatility in interest and exchange rates, commodity and equity prices and the value of financial assets; the impact of U.S. and foreign government programs to restore liquidity and stimulate national and global economies; the impact of conditions in the financial and credit markets on the availability and cost of GE Capital’s funding and on our ability to reduce GE Capital’s asset levels as planned; the impact of conditions in the housing market and unemployment rates on the level of commercial and consumer credit defaults; our ability to maintain our current credit rating and the impact on our funding costs and competitive position if we do not do so; the soundness of other financial institutions with which GE Capital does business; the adequacy of our cash flow and earnings and other conditions which may affect our ability to maintain our quarterly dividend at the current level; the level of demand and financial performance of the major industries we serve, including, without limitation, air and rail transportation, energy generation, network television, real estate and healthcare; the impact of regulation and regulatory, investigative and legal proceedings and legal compliance risks, including the impact of proposed financial services regulation; strategic actions, including acquisitions and dispositions and our success in integrating acquired businesses; and numerous other matters of national, regional and global scale, including those of a political, economic, business and competitive nature. These uncertainties may cause our actual future results to be materially different than those expressed in our forward-looking statements. We do not undertake to update our forward-looking statements.
GE Corporate, VP Investor Communications
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