On a general level, underlying demand has been strong for the global industrial economy after the compression in 2020. Axel Johnson International’s order intake of 14 billion SEK represented an increase of 22 percent over 2021.
This is a substantial increase, although we do not believe this necessarily represents true industrial demand in relation to previous years. The inflated demand in the entire global industry relates to supply chain issues coupled with significant price inflation.
The complex situation has naturally put enormous pressure on our companies which they have handled impressively, resulting in recorded sales at around 13 billion SEK. We have grown significantly more than the underlying market in all our business groups for many years now and are rewarded with continued profitable growth. We have set yet another operating profit record of close to 1 billion SEK.
The global industry is facing an extensive transformation that will take place over the next decades, and the speed of change is accelerating in many different areas. We experience a new sense of urgency from our markets and customers influenced by mega trends like global energy conversion, industrial electrification, technological innovation, and automation. We see great potential in the new business opportunities that will follow in the changing industrial landscape.
During the year, we have made 15 acquisitions to complement our business groups in new ways. We formed a new business group in Industrial Automation and reshaped our sustainability strategy focusing on sustainable customer offers, future-proofing our companies and taking the lead in the transformation, as well as qualifying Axel Johnson International for sustainability-linked financing. Our ability to quickly redirect strategies and our proven decentralised leadership model where decisions are always taken as close to the customers as possible, make us strong, agile and fast.
I am impressed by our 170 companies across 33 countries constantly searching for new ways to serve our customers, and their ability to succeed, time and time again. Our 5,000 people take brave and long-term decisions every day, and together we make things happen and will continue to do so for many years to come. We have a billion reasons to be proud.