AP Moller-Maersk CEO Nils Andersen
Maersk Line has raised its full-year profit target thanks in part to the arrival of larger more efficient vessels.
The World’s largest boxship owner is now predicting a profit of over $2bn for 2014, ahead of the more than $1.5bn previously stated, parent AP Moller-Maersk announced alongside its own stronger than anticipated third quarter bottom line.
Danish conglomerate AP Moller reported a gain of $1.50bn in the third quarter, beating the $1.11bn at the same stage in 2013 and the $1.25bn consensus.
Group chief executive Nils Andersen said the performance was “very, very good” driven by operational improvements in Maersk Line, Maersk Oil and AP Moller Terminals.
“We are well positioned to take advantage of opportunities materialising in a volatile macroeconomic environment, and despite some caution in relation to the market outlook for the coming quarters, we maintain our outlook for the Group result to be around $4.5bn for the year,” he said.
Maersk Line contributed a profit of $685m in the quarter, up from $554m in the same stretch of 2013.
“The improvement was driven by lower unit costs through the continuous focus on operational cost savings mainly from vessel network efficiencies supported by an increase in the average freight rate,” Maersk said.
Maersk Line has booked a profit of $1.67bn in the first nine months of 2014.
Andersen notes the new 2M vessel sharing agreement will provide benefits for customers, thanks to a stronger network with more sailings, and cost advantages for Maersk Line via lower bunker prices when the initiative begins in January.
"This is really a solution where everybody wins," Andersen said.
APM Shipping Services logged a profit of $119m, a marginal rise from the $114m of a year ago.
A much stronger profit from Maersk Tankers, up from $18m to $84m year on year, and Maersk Supply, overcame a smaller gain from Svitzer and losses at Damco.