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Solid results for Stolt-Nielsen
Originally published:  18/11/2008
Stolt-Nielsen has reported a third quarter net profit of $42.3m, compared to $40.9m in the second quarter of 2008 and $40.8m in the third quarter a year ago. The shipowner achieved revenues of $522.6m, up from $504.5m in the second quarter 2008 and $453.2m in the comparable quarter 2007. During the quarter two ships were sold for recycling, resulting in a book gain of $6.8m.
Commenting on the company’s results, chief executive Niels G Stolt-Nielsen said: “SNSA continued to deliver solid results in the third quarter. Our performance reflected continued strength in our markets and our ability to manage rising operating costs, especially increased bunker expense. As a result of a range of actions at Stolt Tankers, including bunker hedges, contract adjustments and bunker surcharges, we recovered a significant portion of our bunker fuel cost increases in the quarter.
“While demand for our tanker, terminal and tank container services remained fundamentally strong in the third quarter, the turmoil in global financial markets and the signs of economic weakness, particularly in the US and Europe, combined with a slowdown in Asia are causes for concern.”
During the quarter the company closed on a $625m loan facility required for the financing of eight 43,000 dwt K-43 class parcel tankers currently on order from SLS Shipbuilding in Korea. The financing, which covers 80 per cent of the cost of the ships, is guaranteed by the Korean Export Insurance Corporation (KEIC) and represents the largest financing ever undertaken by Stolt-Nielsen. The loan facility completes SNSA’s existing newbuilding financing requirements, which total $1.29bn.
“Given today’s crisis-ridden world credit markets, the fact that SNSA has successfully obtained financing to meet its current foreseeable needs represents a significant accomplishment and a substantial advantage,” said Stolt-Nielsen.