P&O Powers Through Poor News

Thursday, March 15, 2001
Britain's Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Co (P&O) shrugged off higher fuel costs and fears of a downturn in the United States to beat forecasts with a 12 percent rise in profits. P&O, which last year shed its cruise liner division to concentrate on its core ports, container shipping and ferry businesses, announced pre-tax profits before exceptionals of 269 million pounds ($390 million). "These results are considerably better than what the market would have hoped for, despite last year's increase in oil prices," chairman Lord Sterling said. "We are cautious regarding the U.S. economy, but the business we are doing in the (United) States is not in keeping with some of the current panic." Sterling said the company was particularly pleased with the performance of P&O Nedlloyd, its container shipping joint venture with Dutch company Royal Nedlloyd, but he called the present returns from the ferry arm inadequate. Operating profits from its 50 percent share of P&O Nedlloyd soared to 66 million pounds, up from one million pounds in 1999 -- a result achieved in spite of additional fuel costs shared between the two companies of 102 million pounds. Operating profits from the ferry business -- the largest of its kind in northwestern Europe -- were 20 million pounds, knocked down from the previous year's 60 million pounds. The company blamed a 75 percent increase in fuel costs, the abolition in 1999 of duty free sales between European Union states and the weakness of the euro. Howard Wheeldon, analyst at brokers Prudential-Bache, said P&O's results were very positive overall. "They are taking aggressive action on ferries this year and it might be too early to say, but there's no sign yet of any downturn for them in ports or in fact any other parts of the group, so one can be pretty positive on this," he said. "This is a global group, from China across Europe to South America, and in India too, so they are very nicely spread," he said. The ports business, seen as the most resilient to an economic downturn, saw its operating profit rise 40 percent to 102.5 million pounds. The company operates 29 container terminals in 16 countries and is keen to expand. "The ports division has a very spread portfolio which is always comforting in these unusual times," said Sterling, adding that it was looking to expand the business. In recent years, P&O has refocused its activities, jettisoning non-core businesses such as its property interests. - (Reuters)
Maritime Reporter March 2014 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

People & Company News

Schlumberger Announces Q1 Results

Schlumberger Limited (NYSE:SLB) today reported first-quarter 2014 revenue from continuing operations of $11.24 billion versus $11.91 billion in the fourth quarter of 2013, and $10.

Russia Ships First Oil From Offshore Arctic Platform

President Vladimir Putin hailed Russia's first shipment of Arctic offshore oil on Friday, saying the platform decried by environmentalists will help Moscow expand its global energy markets share.

Shipping Turns From Banks to Equity Markets for Cash

Shipping companies are turning to equity markets to fill a growing funding gap, betting that investors hungry for decent returns will provide capital to a sector

Cruise Ship Trends

China Homeport for Latest Giant RCI Cruise Ship

Royal Caribbean International says that its latest cruise ship, 'Quantum of the Seas', will make its home port in Shanghai (Baoshan), China The ship will reposition to China in May 2015,

Holland American Line donates $100,000 to Desmond Tutu Peace Foundation

In honor of Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu’s work to spread peace, justice and democracy around the globe, Holland America Line has made a $100,000 donation to

Cruise Industry Disappointed by Findings of Critical LMU Report

New research by the UK's Leeds Metropolitan University (LMU) claims the cruise industry is ignoring its responsibility to the environments and societies it visits.

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Security Naval Architecture Navigation Pipelines Salvage Ship Electronics Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Sonar Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.0921 sec (11 req/sec)