Never Thales had reached such a level of orders in its history. An unprecedented situation after several years of stagnation.
Patrice Caine – B. Rousseau © Thales
it’s called a successful entry. Thales happened to the command in December 2014, Patrice Caine was able to present Tuesday, February 23 a group in top form. The turnover reached 14 billion euros in 2015 (+ 4.5% organic growth) and net profit amounted to € 809 million (+ 44%).
Stats to put on the account of a historical level of order intake for the group of French electronics, defense and transport 18.9 billion, an increase of 31 %. Patrice Caine preferred prevent: “The level of new orders in 2016 should be between 13 and 14 billion euros” . Beyond the financial results alone, how to explain this exceptional 2015 years Thales
1-A harvest of large contracts
in 2015, Thales has garnered 24 contracts over EUR 100 million. For comparison, the group had signed 10 in 2012, 19 in 2013 and 19 also in 2014. In addition, five contracts exceeding € 500 million, the success of the Rafale in Egypt and Qatar, supply over 1,000 vehicles for the Australian army and the military satellite communication system for France ComSat-NG.
the only contract for signaling four London underground lines exceeds the billion euros. “At the same time, small orders of less than € 10 million have not fallen, pointed Bouchiat Pascal, financial director of the group. They are 6 9 billion euros in 2015, against 6.5 billion euros in 2014. “
2-dynamic emerging countries, developed countries that resist
Not surprisingly, the emerging countries have taken much of the growth of Thales in 2015. in these countries, the level of orders has doubled reach 6 billion euros, against only 3 billion euros in 2012. of these contracts: signaling metros Doha and Hong Kong, air defense in Malaysia or even security systems for airports of Oman.
Meanwhile, developed countries have also passed orders. “We are seeing a shift in Western countries in terms of defense and security says Patrice Caine. For the first time in years, we are seeing a rise in spending. This is true in France but also in Germany and Great Britain. in other words, in the three countries with the largest defense budgets in Europe. This creates opportunities “. France has spent 4 billion contract to Thales in 2015.
3-A dynamic multimedia embedded in airplanes
Even low volumes, the media industry on board aircraft is experiencing strong growth, it is about 10%. “We have doubled the order intake in this sector “, assures Patrice Caine. And the leader of mention of contracts with Singapore Airlines, Japan Airlines, Qatar Airways, Saudi Arabian Airlines, JetBlue … In this market, Thales made double blow: the team group new aircraft, whose programs are in full ramp-up production, but also the older aircraft.
the embedded multimedia IFE said in English ( “in flight entertainement”) allows airlines to offer differentiating elements, a strategic necessity in the fierce competition that they engage. Thales has quickly understood and acquired in 2014 Live TV company positioned in this niche. The boss of Thales did also not private to congratulate the contract won with Singapore Airlines, until then teams up with a rival group in this niche, Panasonic.
4-cybersecurity expertise as differentiating
How to explain also the choice of Singapore Airlines? Patrice Caine is convinced it is a “discriminating” against competitors in the group. While airlines are wondering about the risks of cyber attacks, while the air traffic management systems could also be exposed, the head of Thales believes that mastery of this technology will allow the group to pull many contracts in the future.
“We have an extraordinary opportunity because we ship these cybersecurity solutions in our systems” says the boss of Thales. And remember that competitors like Panasonic in IFE or Bombardier in transport do not have this expertise. For now, this activity is only about 700 million euros for the group, with a workforce of 1500 people. To strengthen, Thales acquired California-based Vormetric in October 2015 to EUR 350 million, specializing in the protection of sensitive data.
5- more effective marketing strategy in the field
the contracts won by Thales are also put on the account of an overhaul of the commercial approach. In 2014, Pascal Sourisse, general manager in charge of international development had deciphered this initiative to L’Usine Nouvelle. “We have changed the mode of organization. We have implemented a matrix organization consisting of two dimensions, the group’s business and geography. Many efforts have been made for two years to successfully cooperate both dimensions . “
in short, Thales has tried to s implanting locally worldwide. Among the hundred countries in which the group operates, Thales has industrial sites in half of them. “ We have made efforts in the marketing dimension in a world of engineers where we were perhaps not strong enough, admits Patrice Caine. We took over. This is, for example, not to surspécifications and enhance our products at the right cost. “