Sterling weakness fails to dent ferries operator ICG’s profits
Consolidated revenue rises 3.1 per cent to €289.9 million in first 10 months of year
Irish Ferries carried 385,100 cars in the first 10 months of the year, up 2.2 per cent on last year. Photograph: Eric Luke
Ferries operator Irish Continental Group’s consolidated revenues rose by 3.1 per cent to €289.9 million in the first 10 months of the year with a weaker sterling failing to cause any lasting damage.
Total revenues for the group’s ferries division amounted to €184.4 million, up 1.4 per cent on the previous year.
Irish Ferries carried 385,100 cars, up 2.2 per cent on last year with carryings since the end of June rising 2.1 per cent compared with the same period in 2016. Freight carryings rose 0.5 per cent to 247,700 roll-on, roll-off units. Carryings are up 1.6 per cent since the end of June, underperforming market growth rates as the group focused on higher-yielding accompanied freight traffic ahead of the introduction of the new ferry WB Yeats next year.
The euro value of the ferries division’s sterling originating revenues have been affected by currency fluctuations but this was offset by improvement from sterling-based costs.
Fuel costs continue to be impacted by higher global fuel prices compared with the previous year,the group added.
Revenues were boosted by the sale in late May of the MV Kaitaki for a profit after tax of €25.5 million.
ICG said it still expected to take delivery of the new ship, being built for it by Germany’s Flensburger Schiffbau-Gesellschaft, next June.
Total revenues in the group’s container and terminal division amounted to €111.2 million, a 5.9 per cent increase on last year.
Container freight volumes shipped were up 5.5 per cent at 281,000 20ft equivalent units (teu), with the rate of growth slowing to 3.8 per cent since the end of June.
Units handled at the group’s terminals in Dublin and Belfast increased 3.2 per cent year on year to 258,400 lifts, with throughput up 5.4 per cent over the last four months.