Stressing a commitment to deliver results that place Caterpillar Inc. in the top 25% of the S&P 500 for total shareholder return, Caterpillar Chairman and CEO Doug Oberhelman and members of the company's Executive Office updated analysts last week on the company's strategy and expectations for 2015. The analyst meeting and discussion took place at MINExpo International 2012 inside the Las Vegas Convention Center. At MINExpo, the world's largest and most comprehensive show dedicated to mining, Caterpillar showcased the broadest line of both surface and underground mining and materials handling equipment available in the mining industry.
"There are a number of geopolitical and economic factors driving uncertainty in the world today, but our base case scenario calls for modest global economic growth over the next few years," Oberhelman said. "We think this is a reasonable view and the most likely outcome, and based on that, we expect 2015 sales and revenues for Caterpillar to be in a range of $80 to $100 billion, and for profit in a range of $12 to $18 per share," Oberhelman added. "But just as we have done in the past, Caterpillar is ready to act if we enter a recession. We don't think it's likely, but if it happens, we are prepared to react and would expect to remain attractively profitable and to maintain our dividend."
During the meeting, Caterpillar outlined a number of operational improvements that have occurred in the last few years, changes driven by the execution of the company's updated Vision 2020 strategy, which included a revitalized focus on customers.
"We have done a great job of delivering on our strategy, and over the past 10 years we have delivered a total shareholder return near the top 15% of companies in the S&P 500," Oberhelman said. "From the shop floor to the executive office, we are all working to create a culture within Caterpillar that expects more from ourselves and delivers more to our customers. That attitude, along with a drive for constant improvement, is a requirement in today's highly competitive global marketplace. We are changing the culture of the company and building on Caterpillar's legacy to grow its leadership position," Oberhelman added.
MINExpo 2012 ran Monday, September 24, through Wednesday, September 26. Nearly 100 different Cat dealerships were represented at the show. Hundreds of dealer personnel and Caterpillar Global Mining staff hosted customers and business partners during MINExpo, which is held only once every four years.