Hapag-Lloyd record profits continue in Q3
Liner carrier Hapag-Lloyd said Tuesday it had third quarter operating profit of $358 million, a massive swing from the $250.7 million it lost in the same period in 2009.
Through three quarters, the line has made $687.4 million in operating profit, all but erasing memories of a torrid 2009 in which it needed capital injections from investors and a loan guarantee from the German government.
Hapag-Lloyd's third quarter revenue rose 68.5 percent to $2.4 billion. Through three quarters, the line's revenue was $6.3 billion. The line's volume through three quarters increased 6.8 percent to 3.7 million TEUs, while its average freight rate in that period reached $1,547, a 26.7 percent increase.
The company said its net debt fell 41.2 percent since the start of 2010, to $1 billion as of Sept. 30. Since the financial quarter ended, Hapag-Lloyd has signed a contract for a $360 million revolving line of credit and in October issued a series of fixed-interest bonds for another $730 million.
Hapag-Lloyd also said it has repaid a $304 million bridging loan from TUI (its former majority shareholder which now owns a 43 percent stake in the line) on Nov. 2.
'After sustaining heavy losses last year, the first nine months of this year have seen the best result in the history of our company,' said Michael Behrendt, chairman of the executive board of Hapag-Lloyd AG. 'This development stems from freight rates well above last year's, greater transport volumes and significant cost savings.'