Saab, the Swedish defense company, has announced impressive fourth-quarter earnings and an increased dividend, reflecting the ongoing growth in global defense spending. The company recorded a net profit of SEK1.22 billion ($116.5 million) in the quarter, surpassing expectations and outperforming the SEK1.12 billion earned in the same period last year. Sales also saw a notable increase of 16% to SEK16.12 billion.
Analysts had predicted a net profit of SEK1.15 billion on sales of SEK15.77 billion, making Saab's actual figures even more promising. Moreover, order bookings in the quarter rose by 5.5% to SEK31.5 billion, exceeding analysts' forecasts of SEK20.1 billion. The total order backlog for Saab currently stands at SEK153.41 billion, a significant rise from SEK127.68 billion the previous year.
According to Chief Executive Officer Micael Johansson, these outstanding results reflect the growing importance of geopolitics, security policy, security of supply, and defense technology in today's world. Johansson also outlined Saab's ambitious goals for the future, aiming for organic sales growth between 12% and 16% by 2024. The company expects its operating income growth to surpass that range while maintaining positive operational cash flow.
Looking ahead to 2023-27, Saab anticipates even stronger performance with organic sales growth projected at approximately 15%, up from the previous estimate of around 10%. Additionally, the company foresees its operating income growth exceeding organic sales growth during this period.
To reward its shareholders, Saab has proposed a dividend increase from SEK5.30 to SEK6.40.
Saab's remarkable fourth-quarter earnings and positive outlook demonstrate its commitment to capitalizing on the current surge in global defense spending. With a focus on strategic growth, the company aims to strengthen its market position and deliver excellent returns to its shareholders.