Thales reported sales of €14.9bn in 2016 — a 5.8% increase on a reported basis, +6.8% at constant scope and currency. The year was marked by good performance in emerging markets (+14% organic growth, vs +16% in 2015), while sales in mature markets regained momentum (+4%, vs +1% in 2015).
Sales in the Aerospace segment came in at €5.8bn (+7.9%, or +8.5% at constant scope and currency), including strong performance in commercial and military aircraft avionics and in-flight entertainment. Sales in the Space segment experienced strong growth, lifted by the ramp-up of contracts signed in 2014 and 2015 in both observation and telecommunications activities.
Order intake — which included Thales’ share of the Indian Rafale order — slipped 13%, to €16.5bn, (–11% at constant scope and currency), with the decrease explained by an exceptional volume of large orders booked in 2015. Order intake in the Aerospace segment fell 7%, to €5.9bn. As of 31st December 2016, the Group's order book stood at €33.5bn, which represents almost 2.3 years of sales.
Orders fell as expected in mature markets (€10.1bn, –20%). Emerging markets continued to report solid order intake (€6.4bn, +3%), driven by good momentum in both the Middle East and Asia.
In 2016, consolidated EBIT was €1,354m (9.1% of sales), versus €1,216m (8.6% of sales) in 2015. Adjusted net income, Group share rose 11%, to €897m, in line with EBIT growth. Consolidated net income, Group share was €946m (+24%), benefiting from EBIT growth and from a sharp rise in disposals of assets.
The Aerospace segment posted EBIT of €571m (9.8% of sales), versus €518m (9.6% of sales) in 2015. The EBIT margin was driven by a good performance in the avionics and Space segments. EBIT for the Defence & Security segment was €788m (10.7% of sales), compared to €760m (10.7% of sales) in 2015.
For 2017, Thales expects orders around €14bn and mid-single digit organic growth compared to 2016. Thales also confirmed its mid-term objectives of mid-single digit organic sales growth on average in the 2016-2018 period, and an EBIT margin of between 9.5% and 10% in 2017/2018.