Hapag-Lloyd has upgraded its forecast for the 2020 financial year due to the container shipping market performing much better than expected in the third quarter.
Although volumes were 3% lower than in the same period in 2019, the total was much better than what had been expected some months ago.
There has also been much stronger demand, especially for exports out of Asia, and higher revenues in the third quarter compared to the second quarter.
On the basis of preliminary figures, Hapag-Lloyd’s Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortisation (EBITDA) rose to €650m (US$760m) from 2019’s €554m (US$648m).
Earnings Before Interest and Taxes (EBIT) significantly increased to around €350m (US$409m), up from €253m (US$296m) in 2019.
In addition to the higher demand and respectively higher transport volumes, rigorous cost and revenue management has been one of the main drivers behind the positive business developments.
This has been predominately driven by the company’s Performance Safeguarding Programme (PSP), which was set up in the first quarter of 2020.
Hapag-Lloyd has since updated its EBITDA and EBIT guidance to reflect this positive development and is now expecting an EBIT of €1.1m (US$1.3bn) to €1.3bn (US$1.5bn) and an EBITDA of €2.4bn (US$2.8bn) to €2.6bn (US$3bn).
Rolf Habben Jansen, Hapag-Lloyd’s chief executive officer, said: “Thanks to the positive market development and the wide range of measures we have introduced in recent months, we expect a financial year with results well above our previous forecast. Nevertheless the pandemic will remain to be a huge a challenge and a major source of uncertainty for the entire logistics industry.
“Our focus within the next months will stay on the safety and health of our employees, but also on safeguarding the supply chains of our customers.”