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Bosch Thermotechnology grows 7 percent in 2008 Resource-efficient heating technology in global demand


· International growth continued

· Increased demand due to political environment and high energy prices

· Domestic business driven by record solar sales in Germany

Wetzlar/Frankfurt – Bosch Thermotechnology continued its international growth in 2008 in spite of the beginning economic crisis. Sales revenues rose by 7 percent in the fiscal year to approx. EUR 3 billion, which is equivalent to 9 percent growth in exchange rate-adjusted terms. Global sales of condensing boilers and renewable energy systems such as electric heat pumps and solar systems increased particularly strongly.

Total sales in Germany were up by 12 percent on the previous year. The federal government’s market incentive programme led to record sales, especially in the solar thermal sector.
Outside Germany, Bosch Thermotechnology grew by 5 percent, or 8 percent in exchange rate-adjusted terms, with growth slowing down in the second half due to the economic environment. Bosch Thermotechnology reported the strongest growth in America – in spite of the economic downturn – which was mainly driven by rising demand for energy-efficient electric heat pumps in the USA. Bosch Thermotechnology generated 68 percent of its total sales outside Germany.

The global headcount declined moderately to roughly 13,000 people. In view of the upcoming economic slowdown, temporary employment contracts, especially in Germany and Portugal, were not renewed.

“Bosch Thermotechnology is a global player offering a broad product portfolio. It comprises, for instance, condensing boilers, water heaters and renewable energy systems such as electric heat pumps, solar thermal systems and solid fuel boilers. The increased global demand for these resource-efficient heating technologies was the main driver of our growth in 2008,” said Uwe Glock, President of the Bosch Thermotechnology Division at the presentation of the company’s figures at the ISH fair in Frankfurt.

In 2008, Bosch Thermotechnology expanded its global production capacity for solar collectors from 250,000 to 350,000 p.a., thus clearly increasing its market share in Europe. The acquisition of Servico N.V., the long-standing Belgian distribution partner of the Junkers brand, and the expansion of the international branch network of the Buderus brand had helped strengthen the market position of Bosch Thermotechnology in many countries.

To drive its growth, Bosch Thermotechnology will push forward its future projects and strengthen its ability to innovate. In the past year alone, the Bosch division applied for 70 patents, making it the uncontested industry leader. In autumn 2008, a new 3,000 sqm development centre for hot water technology was taken into service in Aveiro, Portugal, where 70 thermotechnology specialists work to further increase the efficiency of water heating.
In addition, Bosch Thermotechnology will push ahead the launch of new, innovative heating technologies such as micro co-generation. The company plans to test an electricity-generating heater based on Stirling technology in a field test involving 500 devices in several European countries already in 2009. Mass production is scheduled to start in 2011.

In spite of the unfavourable economic outlook, Bosch Thermotechnology is well positioned for the future. Fundamental trends such as the catching-up process in the emerging markets and the growing demand for new resource-efficient heating technologies will open up additional opportunities for growth. Bosch Thermotechnology wants to outgrow the market and expand its competitive position.

Bosch Thermotechnology is a leading supplier of resource-efficient heating products and hot water solutions in Europe. In fiscal 2008, the company generated sales of approx. EUR 3 billion (68 percent outside Germany) and employed approx. 13,000 people. Bosch Thermotechnology has strong international and regional brands and manufactures a diversified product range in 18 plants in nine European and North American countries.

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The Bosch Group is a leading global supplier of technology and services. According to preliminary figures, some 282,000 associates generated sales of roughly 45 billion euros in the areas of automotive and industrial technology, consumer goods, and building technology in fiscal 2008. The Bosch Group comprises Robert Bosch GmbH and its more than 300 subsidiaries and regional companies in over 60 countries. If its sales and service partners are included, then Bosch is represented in roughly 150 countries. This worldwide development, manufacturing, and sales network is the foundation for further growth. Each year, Bosch spends more than 3 billion euros for research and development, and applies for over 3,000 patents worldwide. The company was set up in Stuttgart in 1886 by Robert Bosch (1861-1942) as “Workshop for Precision Mechanics and Electrical Engineering”.

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