From connected technologies to a next-generation hard hat, company highlights growth vision for future
PITTSBURGH, Nov. 11, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- As a 105-year-old company that enlisted Thomas Edison to develop the first electric cap lamp for miners – an innovation that saved tens of thousands of lives - MSA Safety (MSA) continues to develop game-changing technology that raises the bar when it comes to workplace safety. That technology was on display today at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), where the company hosted its 2019 Investor Day to showcase the talent, products and growth programs that support MSA's ongoing evolution as an industrial safety technology company.
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Supported by its leading market positions in a broad range of industries, strong brand equity and diversified product portfolio, the company's vision for the future includes continued revenue growth, margin expansion and driving an internal culture that emphasizes disruptive innovation, talent development and unmatched customer focus.
MSA has changed significantly over the last decade, highlighted by enhanced market leadership positions in key target industries and a focused portfolio of core products, which have grown to reflect nearly 90 percent of the company's overall revenue, up from 55 percent ten years ago. The company has invested in R&D projects, strategic acquisitions and cost reduction programs that have driven a step change in its profitability profile. But the most visible change to customers has been in game-changing technology that MSA continues to bring to the global safety market – more so than any other company in the industry.
Taking center stage at the NYSE were some of these latest innovations for both firefighters and industrial workers. These innovations included:
- The V-Series line of fall protection harnesses, MSA's newest and most comfortable harness line comprised of three full-body, racing-style harness options with varying price points and comfort levels;
- the ALTAIR® io 360, which bridges the gap between a portable gas detector and a fixed system, expanding the company's addressable market into the area-monitoring space;
- LUNAR, an all-new, wireless, handheld device that enables firefighter ranging, thermal imaging, and motion detection through the use of cloud and GPS technologies — delivering a new level of connectivity and firefighter accountability;
- the 5000 Series of Gas Monitors, which enhance facility protection levels while lowering total cost of ownership for customers through MSA's patented sensor technology;
- the V-Gard® H1 Safety Helmet, a new climbing-style industrial helmet designed for specific applications including tower climbing and confined space entry.
"Our innovative and highly advanced technology, as well as our brand equity, is the fuel behind our leading positions in the premium segment of the safety market," said Nish Vartanian, MSA President and CEO. "We're broadening our reach in core markets and introducing disruptive technologies for niche applications. A good example is our connected firefighter platform powered by LUNAR. We expect to launch LUNAR in 2020, and it has the potential to create an addressable market that doesn't exist today."
Commenting on the future of MSA, Mr. Vartanian noted the company's longstanding, singular mission continues to serve as the foundation for growth and success. "Our mission, which is the same as it was 105 years ago, drives everything that we do. It's why we come to work and why we focus on the use of new technologies to help make workplaces safer. We have employees from all backgrounds and generations who connect to that mission, because we know what's at stake for the workers who put their trust in the MSA brand every day."
The company also used its Investor Day to call attention to various growth programs intended to leverage MSA's leading market positions, secular trends in the safety market, and the company's strong balance sheet to sustain its mid-single digit revenue growth expectations over the long term. These programs include being a first mover in the fire service connectivity market, investing to capture market share in the fast-growing fall protection market, and advancing its gas detection solutions offerings through organic innovations and acquisitions, such as the recently completed Sierra Monitor transaction. The company also highlighted opportunities to improve MSA's margin profile in Europe by reducing complexity and streamlining its cost structure, as well as leveraging the company's experienced local teams to drive growth in strategic emerging markets that include China, Mexico, the Middle East and Brazil.
According to Kenneth Krause, MSA's Senior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer, the company's organic revenue growth has accelerated in recent years due to strong uptake on its new products in key markets. "As we look to 2020 and the future, it's encouraging to know that our pipeline of new products and productivity programs is larger and more diverse than ever. Further, our success is not reliant on any single product line or industry, nor any single cost reduction program," he said. "Against this backdrop, and taking into consideration the additional levers we can action to support growth and margin expansion, our expectation of growing earnings at a multiple of revenue over the coming years is very much intact." Mr. Krause added that the company's strong balance sheet positions it well to continue investing in R&D and strategic acquisitions that enhance its position in key core markets.
MSA's leadership team finished off the day by ringing The Closing Bell® to celebrate the company's 105th anniversary in business and 15th anniversary of listing on the NYSE.
About MSA Safety
Established in 1914, MSA Safety Incorporated is the global leader in the development, manufacture and supply of safety products that protect people and facility infrastructures. Many MSA products integrate a combination of electronics, mechanical systems and advanced materials to protect users against hazardous or life-threatening situations. The company's comprehensive product line is used by workers around the world in a broad range of markets, including the oil, gas and petrochemical industry, the fire service, the construction industry, mining and the military. MSA's core products include self-contained breathing apparatus, fixed gas and flame detection systems, portable gas detection instruments, industrial head protection products, firefighter helmets and protective apparel, and fall protection devices. With 2018 revenues of $1.4 billion, MSA employs approximately 4,800 people worldwide. The company is headquartered north of Pittsburgh in Cranberry Township, Pa., and has manufacturing operations in the United States, Europe, Asia and Latin America. With more than 40 international locations, MSA realizes approximately half of its revenue from outside North America. For more information visit MSA's web site at www.MSAsafety.com.