Matson President and CEO Matt Cox said the Honolulu-based shipping company had “exceptional” results for the full year of 2015, while fourth quarter 2016 results were hindered by the increase in bunker fuel prices from mid-November through December.
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For the full year of 2016, Matson had a profit of $80.5 million on revenues of $1.94 billion.
Matson, a leading container carrier in the Jones Act trades to Hawaii and Alaska, said Tuesday it had a profit of $19.4 million for the fourth quarter of 2016, a decrease from the $26.6 million for the fourth quarter of 2015.
However, operating revenues totaled $519.3 million for the fourth quarter of 2016, up from the $494.8 million from the corresponding period a year prior.
For the full year of 2016, Matson had a profit of $80.5 million on revenues of $1.94 billion compared with a profit of $103 million on revenues of $1.88 billion in 2015.
In addition to its services from the West Coast to Hawaii and Alaska, Matson offers services to Guam and other islands in the Pacific. It also offers an eastbound service from China to California on the return leg of its service to Guam.
Matson President and CEO Matt Cox said, “Matson’s core businesses performed largely as expected in the fourth quarter; however, the quarter was negatively impacted by the increase in bunker fuel prices from mid-November through December.
“Full year 2016 financial results failed to match the exceptional results achieved in 2015, when we benefitted from record rates in our expedited China service and volume gains in Hawaii as our primary competitor suffered operational difficulties,” Cox said.
“2016 was a year in which we made critical investments for our future,” he added. “We finalized our Hawaii fleet renewal program by ordering two new Kanaloa-class vessels and we expanded our logistics platform into Alaska with the acquisition of Span Alaska.”
In August, Matson said it signed a contract with the General Dynamics NASSCO shipyard in San Diego, Calif. for it to build two new combination container and roll-on/roll-off ships for $511 million for both ships. They are scheduled for delivery at the end of 2019 and mid-year 2020.
Cox said the new ships and acquisition of Span Alaska are expected to increase profitability in the years ahead.
For 2017, Cox said, “We expect to see modest improvement in each of our core businesses with the exception of Guam where we expect further competitive losses due to the launch of a competitor’s second ship. As a result, we expect Matson’s 2017 operating income to be lower than it was in 2016.”
APL competes with Matson by operating a service that transships cargo through Japan.