Eaton maintains steady path

Updated: 2012-09-06 09:58

By Wang Wen (China Daily)

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Company targets $2 billion sales in China as it looks to boost non-US revenue to 60 percent

Alexander Cutler, 61, chairman and chief executive officer of Eaton Corp, has spent 37 years working at his company - more than half of his age.

The Yale University graduate with bachelor of arts and master of business administration degrees said he still enjoyed operating in the industrial manufacturing sector because he keeps learning new things and "you never do the same thing twice here".

Eaton maintains steady path

Model of China's first large passenger aircraft the C919 on display at an international aviation exhibition in Beijing. Eaton Corp, as a main systems supplier of the project, forecasts it could achieve $2 billion in sales. [Photo/China Daily] 


During his time at Eaton, Cutler has been division controller, assembly plant manager, president and chairman.

Despite not having a technology background, Cutler has had to learn his company's every new innovation.

"If you do every job in a company for 37 years, you get to know the technology pretty well," Cutler said.

Innovation is Eaton's key to success. The company, based in the United States, was established in 1911. The company boasts of being a diversified power management company with more than 100 years of experience providing energy-efficient solutions that help its customers manage electrical, hydraulic and mechanical power.

Its 2011 sales were $16 billion. The company says on its website it is a global technology leader in electrical components, systems and services for power quality, distribution and control. It provides: hydraulics components, systems and services for industrial and mobile equipment, hydraulics and pneumatic systems for commercial and military use, truck and automotive drivetrain and powertrain systems for performance, fuel economy and safety.

Eaton has approximately 73,000 employees and sells products to customers in more than 150 countries.

The company achieved record net income in the second quarter of this year despite the global economic downturn.

Eaton's net income per share was $1.12 in the second quarter of 2012, an increase of 15 percent over the same period in 2011, according to its financial report.

"That is the result of a lot of new products with new technologies that we introduced solving consumer's problems with energy utilization," Cutler said.

Eaton released several advanced plans on Aug 14 to improve the efficiency and power performance of its commercial vehicles' hybrid power system.

Economic downturns are a good time for companies to invent new technology, Cutler said, because the markets are not really moving fast enough to support investment.

Eaton maintains steady path


Several of other companies supplying similar services to Eaton's have also escaped damage from the current global financial crisis.

"In the safety, energy and environment industrials, business is not so bad and we can even see signs of improvement," said Shane Tedjarati, president and chief executive officer of global high growth regions at systems giant Honeywell International Inc, based in Shanghai.

Tedjarati also confirmed a decline in commercial vehicle sales, Eaton's major business 10 years ago.

As CEO of Eaton since 2000, Cutler led the company from being a truck parts supplier into becoming a diversified power management company over the past decade.

The advantages of being diversified became manifest in the recession, with declines in certain sectors offset by successes elsewhere. Eaton's different business sectors have experienced different results this year.

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