The P&O Stena
Line ferries joint venture reported first quarter results had been hit by dampened demand following the millennium, the abolition of duty-free and by Easter falling in the second quarter this year.
The group reported a headline loss of $17.7 million in the first three months of the year - historically its weakest quarter - compared with a profit of $5.4 million in the comparable period a year ago.
The number of passengers carried in the first quarter fell to 1.88 million from 2.21 million in the first quarter of 1999, although its market share held unchanged at 36 percent.
Freight carryings slipped slightly to 278,000 from 289,000 units, and its market share fell to 43 percent from 50 percent, as incremental capacity was introduced by rival Eurotunnel
, operator of the Channel Tunnel