A.P.M Moeller Maersk (Maersk), the largest carrier in the world by market share, saw its revenue grow by 2.5% in the first quarter of 2019, according to its latest financial figures.
Its earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) also rose by 33%, which it credited to improvement across all segments, supported by higher freight rates, lower total costs and positive impact from foreign exchange rates.
In its Ocean segment, the EBITDA increased by 42% and revenue by 1.7%, despite volumes falling 2.2%. Profitability increased because of what Maersk described as a “continued focus” on margins, including positive impacts on the network costs from the synergies with Hamburg Sud.
In Logistics and Services, Maersk suffered a 0.5% decrease in revenue due to lower air freight forwarding revenue, although its gross profit in that segment jumped to 2.2%.
“We have had a good start to 2019. In Q1, revenue grew by 2.5%, and operating earnings improved by 33%. We have significantly strengthened our balance sheet.” says Søren Skou, CEO, A. P. Møller Maersk. #maerskresults #maersk https://t.co/xUDWkRMuiC pic.twitter.com/VqWuOqUnEj
— Maersk (@Maersk) May 24, 2019
Supply chain management volumes continued to develop positively, although at a lower growth rate than seen in 2018.
Intermodal volumes grew significantly in parts of Europe, while air freight forwarding volumes decreased due to reduced volumes among its larger customers.
In a statement accompanying the results, Soren Skou, Maersk’s CEO said: “We had a good start to 2019.
“In Q1, revenue grew by 2.5%, operating earnings improved by 33% and cash flow from operations doubled to USD 1.5bn.
“With a strong free cash flow of USD 3.5bn after the sale of the remaining shares in Total SA., we have significantly strengthened our balance sheet.
“The net interest-bearing debt is reduced by USD 2.4bn since Q4 and by USD 7.1bn since Q1 2018.”