“You are our rudder,” Berra said, as he talked to the attendees of the Emerson Exchange. “The great thing about this gathering, for me, is that it is NOT run by Emerson but by the end users and the Board. We have a partnership with all of you.” Emerson’s members on the Board serve as facilitators, Berra noted, and the Board dictates even what Emerson can do to talk about their own products. “What is so important about this Exchange to Emerson is the friendship. We start out working together as friends– and there is no substitute for that relationship,” Berra said, “…we know each other, we trust each other, and that provides the most valuable direct insight. Because of that relationship we can follow YOUR lead…we are a technology company and this relationship guides that technology in a direction that provides your businesses solid investments in our technology.”
Because “we roll up our sleeves and deliver results,” in the final analysis, Berra noted that “we all have the same job– we are all trying to make our companies better.”
THE STATE OF THE COMPANY
“We had a fabulous year– the final numbers aren’t in yet, but we had a 15% increase in sales which amounts to more than $650 million. We went over the $4.8 mark, and we confidently expect to go over the $5 billion mark in the 2007 fiscal year.”
Berra commented that Emerson will spend more on R&D than any of their competitors and this has generated in 2006 11 new products in control valves alone. He added that there were also 52 new measurement products, 25 new software and systems products, and 18 more in the asset management area.
“So why are we here? It’s going to be a big and busy week–you’ll be able to see and speak with the greatest minds in our industry, and I don’t mean the Emerson people, although they’re pretty smart, too.”
“We learn from you,” Berra said.
“I’ve been in this industry for 37 years. I’m not an overnight success. I started with pneumatic controls and went on to electronic analog, to. DCS, to bus communications with HART and Foundation fieldbus, connectivity with OPC– today we stand at the threshold of the best and most exciting time in our history. It is going to enable us as automation professionals–I still believe it is a NOBLE profession–this is a moment in time when we have new opportunities coming our way.”
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