Norfolk Southern is delivering on commitments to improve corporate performance through successful execution of its strategic plan, the company’s CEO told shareholders.
“We have a sound strategy, and we are producing results that drive sustainable profitability, high-quality growth, and enhanced shareholder value,” CEO James A. Squires said, according to a news release. “We are delivering on our commitments.”
Last year marked the first full year of Norfolk Southern’s five-year strategic plan to operate a faster, lower-cost, and more profitable railroad. Achievements in 2016 included an all-time best operating ratio of 68.9 percent, productivity savings of $250 million, near record levels of network service performance and record locomotive fuel efficiency.
“Through successful execution of our plan, we achieved our key first-year financial and operational targets, and we are well on pace to achieve our 2020 performance goals,” Squires said.
Norfolk Southern is off to a strong start on the second year of the strategic plan, Squires said. He cited 2017 first-quarter records achieved in operating ratio, income from operations, and earnings per share.
The company’s 2020 goals include annual expense savings of more than $650 million; double-digit percentage compound annual growth rate in earnings per share; and an operating ratio – a key measure of operating and financial performance – below 65 percent.
“We are driving growth by providing superior service that optimizes pricing and increases volume and top-line revenue,” Squires said. “We are relentlessly focused on meeting the unique needs of our customers – and we are measuring service excellence as they define it.”