Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Much Criticised Port and Container Terminal Operator Announces Billion Dollar Revenues  

Figures for First Nine Months Up Ten Percent But Will Not Impress Unions

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Shipping News Feature PHILIPPINES – WORLDWIDE – Doubtless shareholders of International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI) stock will be pleased at the unaudited consolidated financial results for the first nine months of 2018 which were published this week. With gross revenues up 10% on port operations to $1 billion they doubtless have good reason. The news is likely to be less well received however by critics of the group who have levelled a succession of charges at it regarding staff safety, union busting and even associated it with murder.

ICTSI handled consolidated volume of 7,152,392 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) in the first nine months of 2018, 5% more than the 6,836,611 TEUs handled in the same period in 2017. The increase in volume was primarily due to improvement in trade activities at most of the Company’s terminal locations and the contribution of new terminals in Lae and Motukea in Papua New Guinea, and Melbourne, Australia. Excluding the new terminals, consolidated volume would have increased by 2%.

ICTSI says the increase in port revenues was mainly due to volume growth; new contracts with shipping lines and services; increase in revenues from non-containerised cargoes, storage and ancillary services; and the contribution from the Company’s new terminals in Lae and Motukea in Papua New Guinea, and Melbourne, Australia. Excluding the new terminals, consolidated gross revenues would have increased by 5%.

Those new terminals also affected consolidated EBITDA for the first nine months of 2018, as against the previous year period, which increased 6% to $462.1 million from $434.9 million but this was affected by higher fixed port lease expenses at Melbourne, Australia. Consequently, EBITDA margin decreased from 47% in the first nine months of 2017 to 46% in the same period in 2018.

It is from Melbourne, and other Australian locations that much of the unrest issues with union organisations International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) and the Maritime Union of Australia (MUA), both headed by Paddy Crumlin, as the fiercest critics of the group.

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