Record orders, sales and profits for Rolls-Royce as civil aerospace sector booms

Posted on 10 Feb 2012

The aeroengine maker’s profits rose 21% to £1.16bn ($1.84bn), while the order book grew 5% to reach £62bn, a new record.

Expansion in the airline industry is the main driver, as customers Boeing and Airbus posted record order in 2011.

And despite the reduction in military spending in the UK, Europe and the US, Rolls-Royce reported that its defence aerospace business had also performed well.

While the marine and energy-generation divisions underperformed compared with aerospace, there were at least two highlights for these businesses.

In 2011 the Derby-based manufacturer received the first order for its Enviroship vessel, which is powered solely by liquid natural gas. Its energy division also took its biggest ever order from Petrobras, the semi-public Brazilian oil company, for 32 gas turbine power generators.

John Rishton - Chief Executive of Rolls-Royce
John Rishton - chief executive of Rolls-Royce

Last year had been a good year for the company, said John Rishton, chief executive.
“We continue to benefit from a broad portfolio, a large and growing customer base and access to markets where demand remains strong for our products and services,” he said.

He also spoke of the British public’s poor attitude to engineering. Rishton said Britain needed more science and engineering, referring to Brian Cox and Robert Winston – television celebrities and now key figures science – to help rebalance the economy away from finance to manufacturing.

Rolls’ civil aerospace division in 2011 saw profits increase by 27% to £499m and the company has orders for more than 5,000 engines.

Rolls-Royce teamed up with Daimler last year to buy the German engine maker Tognum for about £3bn, its biggest acquisition in recent years.