BOSTON — GE today announced results for the fourth quarter ending December 31, 2019.
GE Chairman and CEO H. Lawrence Culp, Jr. said, “The fourth quarter marked a strong close to the year for GE. We met or exceeded our full-year financial targets and are on a positive trajectory for 2020. We’re proud of our progress in 2019, including decisive actions to reduce our leverage and strengthen our businesses. Our work continues, but GE’s committed team, exceptional technology, and global network make me more confident than ever that we can deliver.”
Culp continued, “Our priorities looking forward are clear. We are solidifying our financial position, continuing to strengthen our businesses as improvement efforts build momentum, and driving long-term profitable growth. We remain committed to creating value as we continue our multi-year transformation.”
GE took action in 2019 on its strategic priorities:
- Reduced GE Industrial leverage, largely driven by reducing net debt* by $7 billion, bringing GE’s net debt*/ EBITDA* ratio from 4.8x in 2018 to 4.2x in 2019. Used cash from Wabtec and Baker Hughes transactions to pay down debt, including a $5 billion debt tender. Announced the sale of BioPharma to generate further cash for deleveraging as well as U.S. pension benefit changes to further reduce debt.
- Reduced GE Capital leverage, largely driven by reducing GE Capital debt by $7 billion, bringing GE Capital’s debt-to-equity ratio from 5.7x in 2018 to 3.9x in 2019. Completed asset reductions of approximately $12 billion, exceeding the 2019 target of $10 billion and the two-year target of $25 billion.
- Strengthened GE’s businesses. Aviation and Healthcare generated profitable growth, Power is stabilizing its businesses, Renewable Energy delivered a steep volume ramp in Onshore Wind to meet customer demand despite mixed performance overall, and GE Capital grew earnings partly through better operations.
- Began to drive Lean transformation and mindset throughout GE. Established common operating processes and metrics and a series of standard operational, talent, strategy, and budget reviews. Shifted decision-making and accountability to the businesses, including delayering Power and Renewable Energy.
- Named new leaders, including Carolina Dybeck Happe as Chief Financial Officer (to start in early 2020), Kevin Cox as Chief HR Officer, Pat Byrne as CEO of Digital, Rachel Duan as CEO of Global Growth Organization, John Godsman as VP Business Development, Steve Winoker as VP Investor Relations, and in newly created roles, Monish Patolawala as VP Operational Transformation and Chris Pereira as Chief Risk Officer.