Horizon: second quarter earnings hit by antitrust expenses
Horizon Lines, the largest U.S. operator of domestic container shipping services, said it had profit of $7.2 million in the second quarter ending June 22 compared to $9.6 million in the same 2007 period.
The company said its results reflect $2.4 million in legal expenses related to the U.S. Justice Department’s antitrust investigation of domestic liner shipping companies. The company said it anticipated $6.5 million in antitrust related legal expenses in 2008.
Revenue was $331 million in the quarter compared to $295.7 million in the same period the prior year.
The company said its revenue per container improved $349, or 9.7 percent from the same period a year ago.
The results reflect “strong execution by our associates in a very challenging environment,” said Chuck Raymond, chairman, president and chief executive officer. “Despite sharply rising fuel costs and volume softness related primarily to the ongoing recessionary business environment in Puerto Rico, we achieved a 13.8 percent increase in our adjusted earnings per share.” Horizon also sails to Hawaii, Guam and Alaska.
“We were able to effectively mitigate the impact of steep fuel cost increases in the quarter through a combination of conservation, strict vessel scheduling and fuel cost recovery measures,” Raymond said. “Additionally, we repaid $10 million in revolving debt during the quarter, further strengthening our financial position.”