P&O NEDLLOYD RECORDS FIRST ANNUAL PROFITS SINCE MERGER
P&O Nedlloyd Container Line reported a pre-tax profit of $140 million for 2000, the first profit since the merger of P&O Containers and Nedlloyd Lines at the end of 1996. The annual profit was boosted by a pre-tax result of $87 million in the fourth quarter, up from $17 million in the corresponding quarter in 1999.
For the fourth quarter, operating profit climbed to $96 million, from $31 million, and quarterly revenues increased by 14 percent, to $1.1 billion, from $986 million.
“P&O Nedlloyd achieved an operating profit in the fourth quarter of $96 million, $65 million up on on the fourth quarter of 1999 and the strongest quarterly result since P&O Nedlloyd began trading,” a spokesman said.
P&O Nedlloyd reported that its traffic volume in the fourth quarter totaled 812,900 TEUs, up 10 percent, with average revenue per TEU of $1,385, up 4 percent.
The Anglo-Dutch carrier said that, last year, it benefitted from positive developments on volumes, rates and cost savings.
“The current cost savings programme is on course and a further improvement of approximately $200 million will be achieved by the end of 2003,” it said.
For the year, P&O Nedlloyd reported a pre-tax profit of $140 million, as compared to a loss of $51 million in 1999.
Operating profit last year soared to $201 million, from $7 million in 1999. The improvement came despite higher fuel costs of $150 million, which affected mainly the second half of the year.
Revenues increased by 12 percent, to $4.1 billion in 2000, from $3.7 billion.
The carrier’s traffic volume totaled 3 million TEUs last year, up by 8 percent, as average revenue per TEU rose by 4 percent, to $1,355, from $1,302 in 1999.
The carrier said that the U.S. economy created uncertainties for some of its activities.
However, with continuing growth in world trade and cost savings, it predicted a positive outlook for its results this year, despite the U.S. uncertainties. “P&O Nedlloyd’s mix of trades leaves it relatively less exposed to the U.S. economy than some competitor lines,” a spokesman said,
P&O Nedlloyd’s improved results for 2000 follow the announcements of record profits by fellow container shipping groups CP Ships and Neptune Orient Lines. CP Ships posted a net income of C$207 million ($138 million) for 2000, while NOL had a net profit last year of $178 million.