March 24, 2009

Headlines from Today’s Activities
- CEO Hogan: ABB Poised for Return to Growth
- Sky Not the Limit, But Not Falling Either
- Financial, Technology Outlook Strong for ABB
- “Green” Thinking Shapes Instrumentation Best Practices
- The ABCs of Sustainable Energy Management
- Integrating Process and Power for Fun and Profit

CEO Hogan: ABB Poised for Return to Growth
Joe Hogan, ABB’s CEO, says there’s light at the end of the present worldwide economic downturn tunnel, and that his company will help deliver the power and automation to produce it.

Hogan presented the opening keynote address on the first day of ABB Automation and Power World 2009 today at the Orlando World Center Marriott Resort and Convention Center in Florida. Hogan launched into his keynote by thanking the more than 3,200 attendees at ABB Automation and Power World for coming to the event.

“It’s great to see so many customers and partners here,” said Hogan. “It shows real commitment despite the tough economic times we’re going through now.” Hogan joined ABB in September 2008 after 23 years at General Electric, including stints leading GE Healthcare, GE Medical Systems and GE Fanuc.

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“Every dark shadow isn’t an alligator.” ABB’s Joe Hogan attributed much of today’s economic doom and gloom to poor visibility.

Sky Not the Limit, But Not Falling Either
“In the past, the sky was the limit,” said Michel Demaré, ABB Group CFO and president of global markets, as he explained ABB’s view of the global impact of the economic slowdown to an internationally representative crowd today at ABB Automation and Power World 2009 in Orlando, Fla.

“This year, the situation is different,” Demaré continued. And the degree of the difference depends upon which country’s sky you are operating under. “We deal with so many customers in so many different environments in so many different parts of the world, we are like a barometer,” said Demaré. “Developed economies are hardest hit by the economy,” said Demaré. “And growth in emerging markets has gone from very high rates to slow.” But regardless of the maturity of an economy, challenges and opportunities present themselves.

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“Developing economies are committed to developing infrastructure.” ABB’s Michel Demaré offered a CFO’s perspective on the silver linings in today’s economic clouds.

Financial, Technology Outlook Strong for ABB
“Our intention is to emerge from this downturn in a stronger position than before.” New to the post since last year’s ABB Automation World conference, ABB Group CEO Joe Hogan repeated this refrain several times as he led the automation press through a tour of ABB’s financial position in this year’s tough new economy. “2008 seems like it was a decade ago,” he said, as he reported the company’s record–breaking financial performance last year.

“Revenue was $34.9 billion, orders were $38.3 billion. EBIT was $4.6 billion after adjustments, and we have about $4 billion in cash on hand,” he said. “We started 2009 with a $24 billion backlog, which will carry us into 2010,” he added, “so we should be able to ride out the cycle.”

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Click here to see a video demonstrating the high-speed capabilities of ABB's latest robot platform.

“Edison once said, ‘Vision without execution is hallucination.’ But we’re executing.” CTO Peter Terwiesch detailed how ABB is helping clients to realize the potential of process automation, safety and power systems integration.

“Green” Thinking Shapes Instrumentation Best Practices
When you start applying “green” thinking to automation, the results you get can surprise you, as Dean Minehart, ABB’s instrumentation strategic account manager for the oil and gas market, showed in his presentation on “Green Instrumentation Engineering Practices,” at ABB Automation and Power World this week in Orlando.

“Green instrumentation can ensure safe and reliable operations so people are protected,” Minehart said. “It can minimize environmental impact so the environment is protected, and it can increase asset availability and ROI so the shareholders are protected.”

“ABB is a total life cycle provider,” Minehart added, showcasing ABB’s Safety Instrumented System portfolio. “These best–in–class safety ratings improve overall asset availability because the required proof–test interval (10 years) is longer than many other vendors’ products.”

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“A green mindset will influence many of your instrumentation decisions.” ABB’s Dean Minehart examined how instrumentation choices affect such business outcomes as energy efficiency, environmental emissions and maintenance effectiveness.

The ABCs of Sustainable Energy Management
Energy management means many things to many companies. But one thing is certain: It matters, especially in these trying economic times and with so much global emphasis being placed on conservation and environmental issues.

With a decided focus on ABB’s relaunch of its cpmPlus Energy Manager product as a cross-industry application, Seppo Lahtinen, product line manager, collaborative production management, ABB Oy, Process Industry, explained the concept of energy management in terms of profitability and sustainability and offered some examples of practical applications at ABB Automation and Power World 2009 held this week in Orlando, Fla.

“We’re all worried about energy prices,” said Lahtinen. “In the long term, they will rise. If you are a company, you use energy. How can you manage it?”

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“Energy management is a continuous process that starts from the top.” ABB’s Seppo Lahtinen explored how to make energy management pay off over both short– and long–term horizons.

Integrating Process and Power for Fun and Profit
Many manufacturers know it would be good to integrate their process automation and power control systems, and some can even explain why—but only a few were able to pull it off, at least, that is, until recently. To help users begin to realize the benefits of tying together more of their controls and power equipment, Stefan Bollmeyer presented “Electrical Integration: A Strategy for Achieving Unified Operations and Extended Asset Management” this week at the ABB Automation and Power World 2009 in Orlando. Bollmeyer is ABB’s fieldbus product manager for its System 800xA.

Bollmeyer confirmed that much of the process electrification, process instrumentation, power distribution and power management devices in many plants have been there for years and still are not integrated. “For instance, a large pulp and paper mill may typically have 2,400 electrical actuators, 1,160 motor starters, 100 drives and 250 intelligent electrical devices (IEDs) for medium– and high–voltage switchgear, while its process plant may have 1,321 motor starters, 240 drives and 111 IEDs for medium–voltage switchgear,” he explained. “These are all high–cost assets, so there are many good reasons to integrate them.”

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“Electrical integration is the next frontier in driving productivity, increasing safety and reducing costs.” ABB’s Stefan Bollmeyer discussed the bottom-line potential for an integrated approach to process and power controls.

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