Opportunities report

As an international supplier of industrial gases, opportunities basically arise for the Messer Group from the multifarious usages of industrial gases to produce products needed in all fields of life and in all countries of the world. Through investment, we are able to exploit available opportunities to realize the full potential of the business and to maintain/ strengthen our market position. We are also taking advantage of the opportunities arising from internationalization – in particular in the light of positive developments on the emerging economies – by expanding our facilities in these regions. This also enables us to engage in new markets with long-term growth potential. We encourage the identification of new opportunities by embedding employee motivation in the Group’s corporate values and by fostering ideas management.

The main opportunities which could be significant for the net assets, financial and earnings position of the Messer Group are as follows:

Macroeconomic opportunities

The general economic environment plays an important role for our operations, our financial and earnings position and our cash flows. Our forecast for 2018 is based on the expectation that future macroeconomic conditions correspond to the description provided in the Outlook Report section of the management report. If the world economy as a whole or in regions or countries of relevance for our business performs better than described, our sales and earnings could exceed the forecasted amounts.

Market opportunities

Our forecasts continue to incorporate continued significant market growth, particularly in China, but, for the purposes of the outlook for 2018, have not assumed any further increase in the growth rate. A sharp economic upswing could have a positive impact on the Group‘s sales and earnings.

We forecast a modest economic recovery in Europe. A faster economic recovery, especially in the southern European countries of the euro area, could have a positive impact on our sales and earnings.

Opportunities arising from industrial gases applications

Our products are used worldwide in a variety of production processes. In the field of application technology, the Messer Group continuously analyzes multifarious processes in order to facilitate more efficient production processes for our customers through the use of industrial gases. New applications identified in this way may open up new business opportunities which could have a positive impact on our sales and earnings.

Opportunities arising from optimization measures

Where necessary, the Messer Group implements appropriate optimization measures to support business performance. If the various measures are implemented more quickly or more successfully than expected, this could have a positive impact on our sales and earnings.

Opportunities created by our employees

The Messer Group promotes „ideas management“ throughout the group and employees are encouraged to submit improvement proposals with local and/or international relevance. Furthermore, human resources development programs and other training offers are available to encourage the systematic development and exploitation of our employees’ potential. If we achieve better progress with these measures and methods than currently expected, this could have a positive impact on our sales and earnings.

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