French electrical supplier Legrand reported sales were up 10.5% in 2007, with profit up 67%.
Recent acquisitions added 3.6% in growth, and variations in exchange rates, mainly the euro vs. the dollar, had a negative impact of 1.8%. In the past three years, Legrand has acquired 15 companies, including six in 2007, representing annual sales of more than half a billion euros.
In 2008, Legrand has announced the acquisition of PW Industries, a U.S. firm specialized in ceiling cable tray systems for commercial and industrial sectors. In 2007, PW Industries reported sales of $32 million.
In the U.S. and Canada, Legrand posted a 4.2% increase in sales in the second half of 2007 for a full-year increase of 1.6%. This reflected the continuation of moderate growth in the commercial sector and the vigorous performances of high value-added businesses." In particular, Legrand reported sales of lighting controls brand Vantage, home automation brand OnQ, and energy saving lighting controls brand The Watt Stopper, were up by more than 22% in 2007.
Legrand attributed part of its increase in 2007 to strength in emerging markets, which accounted for nearly 25% of the total sales for the year. In 2007, sales on emerging markets rose 18% minus acquisitions and exchange rate fluctuations, accounting for 50% of the group's overall organic growth.
Assuming an economic slowdown but no major upsets of its markets, Legrand is confident in its capacity to raise sales in 2008 by 7 to 9%, excluding exchange-rate effects and including the contribution of acquisitions, and, over the same period to reach an adjusted operating margin at a level close to that achieved in 2007.