Finland’s RORO shipping company Finnlines, part of the Italian Grimaldi Group, said that it beat its record quarter performance by 35 percent in the first quarter of this year reaching EUR 11.2 million (USD 12.4 million).
The Finnlines Group’s revenue totalled EUR 120.9 million, an increase of 14.9 per cent compared to the same period in the previous year.
Finnlines’ shipping and sea transport services generated revenue of EUR 116 million against last year’s EUR 100.4 million, while its port operations reached EUR 10.1 million when compared to the previous year’s EUR 9.3 million. The shipping and sea transport services segment’s revenue improved due to higher cargo volumes especially in Finland-Germany trade, while in port operations, the revenue grew due to increased external and internal cargo handling activities, the company said.
“After a long period of sluggish economic development in Europe, there are positive signs in economic growth and especially in Finland the volume of exported and imported goods has increased over 10 per cent during the first three months,” Emanuele Grimaldi, the company’s President and CEO said.
The company completed EUR 1 billion Capex Programme in 2006–2016 targeted towards the fleet renewal and its EUR 100 million Environmental Investment Programme will be completed in May.
“The superb result improvement during these past four years has brought Finnlines Group’s financial and operational performance to an all-time high and is based on those past investments and, also on our ability to quickly respond to the changes in the market. Right after we have completed these major capex programmes, we are already looking beyond the horizon and at the growth opportunities,” he added.
Finnlines has started a new capex programme, the Energy Efficiency and Emission Reduction Investment Programme, under which the company’s existing ro-ro vessels will be lengthened. As explained by Grimaldi, the investment programme will provide Finnlines with increased capacity and increased cargo flexibility.
To that end, on 31 March 2017, Finnlines signed an agreement with Remontowa S.A. shipyard in Gdansk, Poland to lengthen four of its Breeze series vessels, with an option of two additional vessels. As explained, the close to 30 per cent capacity increase will considerably reduce the energy consumption per transported unit compared to the original vessel.
In addition to the vessel lengthenings, MS Finneagle’s passenger capacity will be increased to 800 by building new passenger areas. The above investment program will amount to approximately EUR 70 million if executed in full.
During the first quarter, Finnlines said that it operated on average 19 vessels in its own traffic. The cargo volumes transported during January–March totalled approximately 165,000 (153 in 2016) cargo units, 32, 000 cars and 310, 000 tons of freight not possible to measure in units. In addition, some 115,000 private and commercial passengers were transported.