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May 4, 2021 12:15 PM, EDT

Eaton Reports Q1 Stronger Than Expected

Eaton Corp. headquartersFirst-quarter earnings rose to $459 million from $438 million in the 2020 period. (Eaton Corp.)

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Power management company Eaton Corp. reported higher net income and flat revenue in the first quarter as businesses continue to recover from the pandemic.

Net income for the quarter ended March 31 rose to $459 million, or $1.14 per diluted share, compared with $438 million, $1.07, in the 2020 period.

Revenue was $4.6 billion compared with $4.7 billion a year earlier.

Craig Arnold

Arnold

“Our first quarter was stronger than expected,” Chairman and CEO Craig Arnold said in a release, “with organic sales well above the high end of our guidance range, segment margin at record levels and strong cash flow. We are pleased with how rapidly our businesses are recovering towards pre-pandemic levels.”

Eaton’s vehicle segment posted sales of $654 million, up 9% over the first quarter of 2020, driven entirely by organic sales, the Dublin-based company noted. Operating profits were $113 million, up 40 % compared with a year earlier. Operating margins were 17.3%, up 380 basis points over the first quarter of 2020.

Eaton’s commercial vehicle products include transmissions, clutches, and fluid and air conveyance solutions.

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E-mobility segment sales were $83 million, up 15% compared with a year earlier, driven by organic sales growth of 13% and positive currency translation of 2%. The segment recorded an operating loss of $7 million, reflecting continued investment in research and development for new programs.

The segment combines elements of Eaton’s electrical and vehicle businesses to provide electric vehicle solutions to passenger car, commercial vehicle and off-highway OEMs.

Revenue for its electrical Americas segment, its largest, was $1.6 billion, down 9% from the first quarter of 2020 and driven by a 14% reduction from the divestiture of the lighting business. Organic sales were up 2%, the acquisitions of Power Distribution Inc. and Tripp Lite added 2%, and positive currency translation added 1%. Operating profits were $332 million, up 8% compared with a year earlier. Operating margins were 20.5%, up 330 basis points over the first quarter of 2020.

Among the quarter’s highlights

• On March 22, Eaton acquired Green Motion SA, a designer and manufacturer of electric vehicle charging hardware and related software based in Switzerland.

• On March 17, Eaton acquired Tripp Lite, a supplier of power quality products and connectivity solutions including single-phase uninterruptible power supply systems, rack power distribution units, surge protectors, and enclosures for data centers, industrial, medical, and communications markets in the Americas.

“Factoring in the earlier-than-expected closing of the Tripp Lite acquisition and our strong first quarter performance, we now expect 2021 adjusted [full-year] earnings per share to be between $5.90 and $6.30, up 24% at the midpoint over 2020,” Arnold said. “We anticipate adjusted earnings per share for the second quarter of 2021 to be between $1.45 and $1.55.”

In 2020, it had net income of $1.4 billion, $3.49, on revenue of $17.8 billion.

Eaton sells products to customers in more than 175 countries and has 92,000 employees.

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