3M’s fourth quarter worldwide sales were $6.1 billion, up 11.1% compared to the fourth quarter of 2008. Local-currency sales including acquisitions increased 6.4% and foreign exchange added 4.8% to sales growth in the quarter. All six of the company’s business segments posted higher year-on-year sales in local currencies.
In 3M’s Health Care business, fourth quarter sales were $1.1 billion, were up 10.8% year-on-year. Fourth quarter sales were up 6% in local currency; currency impacts added 4.9% to sales. Sales in local currencies grew at a double-digit rate in infection prevention solutions and also drove positive local currency sales growth in health information systems, skin and wound care, food safety and in drug delivery systems.
Operating income in the fourth quarter increased 26% to $375 million, with margins at 31.9%.
In the Industrial and Transportation section, fourth quarter sales climbed 10% to $1.9 billion. Sales rose 4.6% in local currency; currency impacts added 5.4% to sales. Double-digit local currency sales growth was reported in the automotive OEM business, driven by favorable auto production comparisons and in the renewable energy business.
For the full year, 3M’s sales were $23.1 billion. “By any measure, 2009 was a highly successful year for 3M, and I could not be more proud of the 3M team for their undaunted effort in a challenging year,”said George Buckley, 3M chairman, president/CEO. “We delivered tremendous results while continuing to invest significantly in our future with R&D investments of $41.3 billion and capital investments topping $900 million. And we posted a 21.7% operating margin for the year, equal to 2008 levels, which is a tremendous achievement in the midst of the worst recession since early last century.”