WILH. WILHELMSEN REPORTS PROFIT RECOVERY
Wilh. Wilhelmsen ASA, the Scandinavian shipping group that owns 50 percent of Wallenius Wilhelmsen Lines, reported improved operating profits and net profits for the quarter and year ended Dec. 31, 2000.
For the fourth quarter, net income increased to $18.9 million, up 66 percent when compared to the year-earlier quarter. Operating income was up by 63 percent, to $27.5 million, from $16.9 million.
Gross revenue for the quarter decreased to $188.9 million, from $210.2 million in the fourth quarter of 1999.
The liner and car carriers arm of the group, which includes Wallenius Wilhelmsen Lines, reported a quarterly operating income of $23.2 million, up from $15.8 million a year earlier. Net income rose to $10.5 million, from $8.6 million, whereas gross revenues dropped to $150.3 million, from $181.6 million.
For the year, the Wilhelmsen group reported an operating income of $83.6 million, up from $54.9 million in 1999. Net income reached $51 million, up from $36.8 million in the previous year. Gross revenue increased to $835.4 million, from $786.3 million.
The liner and car carriers activities produced an operating profit of $87.5 million in 2000, up from $61.5 million in the previous year. Net income was $38.4 million, slightly ahead of the $36.7 million corresponding figure for 1999. Gross revenues rose to $696.3 million, from $667.3 million.
“Financial results for Wilh. Wilhelmsen in 2000 showed clear progress from the year before,” a spokesman said. “Earnings by the liner and car carrier business achieved a small improvement, while annual results from tanker operations increased by roughly $10 million from the year before.”
The company said that the improvement in the results of its liner and car carriers business “primarily reflects a bigger tonnage deployment and a stronger U.S. dollar exchange rate.” On the other hand, bunkers costs were higher than in 1999.
Last year, Wilh. Wilhelmsen sold its two large tankers to Frontline and wound up Wilship, the arm of the group which previously managed its tanker involvement.
The company said that its results for the present year will primarily depend on developments in the car and roll-on/roll-off carrier markets.
“External conditions, such as economic developments in the U.S.A. and Japan, will be very significant for results in the liner and car carrying
business,” a spokesman said. Volumes of ro-ro cargo are expected to remain good, but the outlook for cars is more uncertain, according to the company.