Our Strengths

Market leader in attractive European market.

We are the leading European industrial truck manufacturer with a market share of approximately 33% in 2011. Our position is particularly strong in Western Europe, where, in 2011, we commanded market shares in excess of 40% in both Germany and France. We believe that our strong product offering, our customer relationships, our dense sales and service network, and our significant installed base of trucks provide us with an excellent platform to capture future demand in the European markets. The market in which we operate is large and has seen historic growth at rates exceeding world GDP growth rates. In general, much of the demand in our core European market is driven by replacement demand with underlying growth supported by globalization and world trade.

Established platform capturing emerging markets growth.

We have a strong presence in many emerging markets. Approximately 30% of our new trucks were sold to growth markets in 2011, mainly in China, Brazil and Eastern Europe. We are in a leading market position in Eastern Europe and Brazil with approximately 21% and 23% market share in 2011, respectively, in these markets. Additionally, we are the largest non-domestic manufacturer of industrial trucks in China. In 2011, we significantly strengthened our position in India by establishing a joint venture with Voltas. This joint venture allows us to capture significant market share in an early stage of the development of the Indian market. We believe that our position in these emerging economies will allow us to capture additional sales volumes as these markets continue to grow. In addition, given our access to premium product offerings across all truck types and our service know-how derived from our strong market position in Europe, we believe that we are well positioned to benefit as these markets mature and demand shifts towards premium products and services that not all local players may be able to provide.

Global and regional brands with a loyal customer following.

We operate our business through a multi‑brand strategy, allowing us to strategically position ourselves across a wide range of products, geographies, regions and customer preferences. Our global Linde and STILL brands, as well as our regional Fenwick, OM, Baoli and Voltas brands, benefit from significant customer recognition and loyalty. We leverage our multi-brand platform to reach a wide range of regions and customers, as well as the economy, value and premium market segments. We believe that this enhances our position by better addressing customer needs in their specific locations.

Full product offering, diversified across products, customers and geographic markets.

We offer a complete product range of new industrial trucks, from small low-lift pallet trucks up to 46 ton container handlers, as well as maintenance and repair services, comprehensive fleet management solutions and financial solutions. This comprehensive product offering is important to our premium customers, who seek a full product line, including services, in selecting an industrial truck manufacturer. Our customers are highly diversified by end markets and by geography. China is our third biggest market behind Germany and France in terms of new trucks sold in units, and Brazil is our sixth biggest market. Our top ten customers for the KION Group only represented 6% of our total revenue in 2011.

Strong after sales business reducing revenues and earnings volatility.

In 2011, we generated 42% of our revenue from our service offering, including 24% from our after sales business, which includes maintenance and spare parts. This revenue stream, which produces higher margins than our new truck sales, has historically been less volatile than new truck sales. Accordingly, our significant activities in this area somewhat reduce the overall volatility of our revenues. Our comprehensive after sales service offering benefits from our installed base of over a million trucks worldwide and is complemented by our network of over 1,200 sales and service locations in over 100 countries with more than 7,000 service employees globally, allowing us to remain close to our customers. Customer proximity is particular important from a service perspective as many customers use our products in mission critical applications, in many instances for up to twenty-four hours a day, and require very short response times by service technicians. We believe that our dense network represents a significant competitive advantage over competitors that do not have such networks and would need to invest heavily to develop them. This is particularly true for competitors who are focused on new truck sales.

Competitive advantage through technological leadership.

We are at the technological forefront of the IC truck and E truck segments, and have a leading technological position in warehouse trucks. LMH is a technological leader with its highly efficient and reliable hydrostatic drive, while STILL is well positioned in hybrid technology with its diesel‑electric drive. We are committed to investing in products in line with major trends in the industry and are leading in hybrid technology, lithium-ion technology, fuel cells, ergonomics and safety. All of our brands benefit from our large research and development platform that allows us to make research results available across the group, while simultaneously addressing the specific needs of our brands in terms of technology and brand differentiation. We believe that as a result of our technological superiority, the total cost of ownership of specific Linde IC trucks is significantly lower than that of many other trucks.

Operational excellence.

We constantly search for and implement programs to increase our efficiency and drive our margins. Since 2006, we have implemented a number of restructuring and cost savings measures, including temporary measures. Measures we have implemented include the closure of our former manufacturing site in Basingstoke and the downsizing of two further sites in Germany. In addition, we have strengthened our OM brand and sales network in Italy by leveraging the existing STILL product portfolio. These measures have significantly improved our structural cost base. We continue to implement a number of further operational improvements, such as common production standards, consolidation of our product portfolio, design-to-cost initiatives and supplier management, and also continue to consider further relocation plans, such as the closure of our plants in Bari, Italy and Montataire, France. These measures, together with the inherent operating leverage, offer the potential for significant profit improvement as our revenues increase.

Experienced management team.

Our senior management team has extensive experience across our industry and has an excellent track record in the execution of our growth strategy, in restructuring and redesigning our business and in delivering efficiencies and significant synergies across our group. Through our optimized and streamlined structures and processes implemented by our senior management team, we believe we are in a strong position to compete in the market.

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