The first annual meeting of Mercedes-Benz Group AG (stock exchange code: MBG) today in Stuttgart saw management reassert its claim to leadership in the automotive luxury segment. “In addition to accelerating electrification and digitalization, the company’s transformation continues with a relentless focus on improving financial robustness,” MB said. “Strong results in the financial year 2021 and a successful start to 2022 affirm the company’s strategic path, even in a volatile environment.”
“Last year Mercedes-Benz made good progress: We were able to sell not only more electric vehicles, but also more top models: And this, despite the ongoing pandemic and the supply bottlenecks for semiconductors. Thus, we have come a step closer to our goal of becoming fully electric and offering the most desirable vehicles,” Bernd Pischetsrieder, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Mercedes-Benz Group AG said on Friday at the virtual Annual Meeting.
The claim was backed by these assertions:
- Group sales of the top-end models increased by 30%,
- Sales of electric passenger cars increased by 64%,
- Sales of electric Vans by 118%,
- Adjusted EBIT of the Mercedes-Benz Group grew by 123%.
Well, in the face of the ongoing pandemic and supply bottlenecks, as well as German funding of the Russian war on Ukrainian men, women, children and babies by buying Russian energy products, the financial year 2021 at Mercedes-Benz Cars, Mercedes-Benz Vans and Mercedes-Benz Mobility was successful. A dividend of €5.00 was proposed with €4.30 new reference point for dividend payments.*
Forecast for 2022
This year the Mercedes-Benz Group expects to make further progress toward its long-term strategic goal of CO2 neutrality. “With the EQS SUV, EQE SUV, EQT and eCitan models more than 10 fully electric vehicles will have been presented by the end of 2022.
“Moreover, with the Ambition2039, Mercedes-Benz Cars has set itself the target of reaching an important milestone as early as 2030 on the road to CO2 neutrality: to halve CO2 emissions compared with 2020 levels. Here, the most important levers are electrifying the vehicle fleet, charging with green power, improving battery technology and by extensively using recycled materials and renewable energy in production sites. Potential CO2 emissions are also evaluated as a criterion when contracts are awarded to potential suppliers,” Mercedes said.
Mercedes-Benz plans to cover more than 70% of its energy requirements in production with renewable energy sources by 2030. The company aims to reach this goal by expanding solar and wind power at its own sites and by means of additional power purchase agreements. As part of its “holistic approach to sustainability,” Mercedes-Benz is also building a battery recycling plant in Kuppenheim, Germany.
Elections to the Supervisory Board
Bader M. Al Saad and Dr. Clemens Börsig will leave the Supervisory Board at the end of the Annual Meeting. Dame Polly Courtice, the former Director of the University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership and Marco Gobbetti, CEO of Salvatore Ferragamo S.p.A., have been proposed for election. Thanks to their experience and perspectives in Environmental Social and Governance (ESG) matters and in the luxury goods industry, competence in strategic core areas will be further broadened on the Supervisory Board.
“The strategic realignment of Mercedes-Benz is based on the conviction that sustainability forms the basis for a successful luxury strategy. Mercedes-Benz is striving for a leading position in both areas. With their wealth of experience and broad knowledge, Dame Polly Courtice and Marco Gobbetti are ideally placed to support us in this endeavor,” according to Bernd Pischetsrieder, Chairman of the Supervisory Board.
Since the Extraordinary General Meeting on 1 October 2021, there has been a further change: Dr. Sabine Zimmer stepped down from the Supervisory Board as the Employee Representative as of 8 December 2021. Her successor as Employee Representative is Monika Tielsch, Member of the Works Council at the Mercedes-Benz Sindelfingen plant, as of 9 December 2021.
*The Board of Management and the Supervisory Board proposed a dividend of €5.00 for the financial year 2021 (2020: €1.35) per share. Around €0.70 of the dividend is attributable to Daimler Trucks & Buses, as Daimler Truck Holding AG will not pay a separate dividend to shareholders for 2021. A dividend of €4.30 is the future reference value for the Mercedes-Benz Group. The total payout for 2021 is therefore €5.35 bn (2020: €1.4 bn). All management proposals were approved.