The Chairman’s vision

A TALK WITH MANUEL PELTIER, CHAIRMAN & CHIEF EXECUTIVE, SOLETANCHE FREYSSINET

The Soletanche Freyssinet Group’s 2018 revenue* rose 4.8% on 2017 to €3.271 billion. This growth was driven by strong business volume in Asia, Australia, France and North America, and by the acquisition of ConeTec in Canada, Rob Carr in Australia and Concreet in the Netherlands in 2017 and 2018.

Our order book increased for the fifth consecutive year to a record €3.2 billion, which consolidates the Group’s future. The new projects are divided between shortterm, recurring activity and major projects scheduled over several years. Beyond the many projects currently under way or finalised, we won a number of exceptional contracts in 2018, including the second phase of the Port Said industrial zone in Egypt, for Menard; the I-66 interstate highway in the United States, for Terre Armée; logistics services at the Dampierre nuclear power plant in France, for Nuvia; the roof of the Las Vegas Stadium, for Freyssinet; the underground road corridor in Singapore, for Soletanche Bachy; and monitoring of the Grand Paris transport infrastructure project, for Sixense. All this demonstrates the momentum in the international speciality works sector, in which our Group plays a major role thanks to our comprehensive expertise and our strong business presence worldwide, close to our customers. We are doing our utmost to continue this growth in 2019 and thereafter. As part of this effort, Soletanche Freyssinet earmarks a significant proportion of its annual budget to innovation, to help us meet the current and future needs of our customers. Our design offices are fully committed to innovation, following in the footsteps of Pierre Bachy, Louis Ménard, Henri Vidal and Eugène Freyssinet, the pioneering founders of our companies.

These technical innovations support the major vectors of growth in our markets, which will sustain our business over the long term. Structural maintenance, for example, is generating substantial investment. Freyssinet and Sixense offer unrivalled expertise in this area.

I could also mention the environment, which is a major and growing concern for the public at large and for our customers. We have solutions to offer, including those put forward by Remea, Menard’s subsidiary specialising in remediation, and the Soil Mixing technique used by Soletanche Bachy to improve the ground for the Hong Kong airport while conserving marine ecosystems. The launch of ActivSkeen in active facades and the acquisition of Ertex Solar in photovoltaics applied to buildings are also part of this endeavour. Lastly, our customers are increasingly focusing on resistance to climate events and seeking to build stronger new structures and retrofit existing ones. This is a particularly acute issue in the nuclear sector, for which Nuvia has developed specific solutions to protect structures from earthquakes and flooding. Meanwhile, Terre Armée has developed solutions for preventing embankment erosion and raising dams. To support this growth, we will continue to invest in recruitment, reaching out in particular to young people and women, and to support our teams around the world. Since its inception a decade ago, the Soletanche Freyssinet group’s revenue, areas of expertise and geographical reach have all undergone considerable expansion. Brought together by our common values of innovation, safety culture and passion for our business activities, the men and women at Soletanche Bachy, Menard, Terre Armée, Freyssinet, Nuvia and Sixense are continuing to write the history of our Group, doing everything in their power to support our customers and working with them to shape the world of the future, its cities and its transport and energy systems. Building on these assets, we can go forward with confidence.