03 September 2015

[030915.EN.SEA] CMA CGM Quarterly Profit Up 67pc to US$156 Million As Revenue Falls 2.1pc

FRENCH shipping giant, the world's No 3 container line, posted a 67 per cent increase in second quarter net profit to US$156 million, drawn on revenues of $4.11 billion, which declined 2.1 per cent year on year.

First half volumes were up 8.2 per cent to 6.4 million TEU and company revenue was stable at $8.1 billion with net profit nearly tripled at $562 million.

Volumes carried during the second quarter increased 6.2 per cent year on year to 3.3 million TEU, compared to global market volume growth of one to two per cent.

But average revenue per box fell 7.8 per cent though the decline was "significantly less than benchmark indices for the period due to the broad diversity of the group's customers and lines".

Unit costs fell 10.9 per cent, largely because of the sharp fall in oil prices. The company said it enjoyed above market volume growth of 6.2 per cent.

Operating profit (core EBIT) surged 59.3 per cent compared to the second quarter of 2014 to $325 million, as lower unit costs outpaced the decline in average revenue per container.

CMA CGM upgraded services in fast-growing markets. It reported vigorous growth in its lines to and from the US partly on the weakness of euro, which boosted European exports to the US, particularly reefer cargo.

CMA CGM won the 30-year concession to operate the Kingston (Jamaica) container terminal, which will become the group's regional hub for the Panama Canal expansion scheduled for completion in 2016.

Two new 9,400-TEU vessels joined the group's fleet: the CMA CGM Tage and the CMA CGM Thames. These vessels are designed to operate within the expanded Panama Canal and are currently positioned on fast-developing lines.

During the period, the group also took delivery of the CMA CGM Kerguelen and the CMA CGM Georg Forster, the first two vessels in the 18,000-TEU series.

CMA CGM developed its logistics subsidiary CMA CGM LOG, with the acquisition of 60 per cent in LCL Logistix, a logistics leader in India, and a "framework agreement" regarding a new logistics platform in Cuba.

On July 1, CMA CGM signed two major agreements at an event in Marseille attended by Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius.

One was Tji, a $1 billion financing solutions framework agreement with Chinese bank CEXIM and a partnership with China Merchants (CMHI) as part of China's "One Belt, One Road" programme, a strategic initiative backed by Beijing to develop infrastructure and logistics projects.

Since July, CMA CGM has taken delivery of two 2,100-TEU vessels deployed on lines to Guyana, along with a 9,300-TEU and 18,000-TEU vessel. In the coming weeks, the group will take delivery of one 2,100-TEU vessel, one 9,300-TEU vessel, and two 18,000-TEU vessels, including CMA CGM Bougainville, set to become the largest containership sailing under the French flag.

"Also on 1 July, the group closed the acquisition of OPDR, a shipping company specialising in intra-European multimodal solutions, after the transaction was cleared by the European Commission. OPDR will help solidify the market position of group subsidiary MacAndrews, which is already active in this segment," said the company statement.

The CMA CGM Group obtains the Containers Terminal concession of Kribi, Cameroon, for 25 years.

Source : HKSG.

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