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HHLA maintains successfull course
"Despite an economic environment marked by growing difficulties, in business so far during the year 2008 HHLA has fully met its demanding targets on revenues and earnings. Today there is no change in our expectation that over the whole year we will achieve double-digit earnings growth and EBIT within our target range of between 320 and 350 million euros," stated Klaus-Dieter Peters, HHLA CEO, on the publication of HHLA's Interim Report for January to September on 14 November.
Overview of Group key figures (January to September 2008)
- Revenues were up by 15.4 percent at 1.005,3 million euros.
- Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) improved by 26.5 percent to 360.8 million euros.
- Earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) rose by 31.6 percent to 288.6 million euros.
- Earnings after taxes at 184.9 million euros were up no less than 67.6 percent on the corresponding period of the previous year, one of the reasons being the reform of German Corporation Tax.
- As of 30.9.2008, equity ratio was 41.9 %.
- Throughput in the Container Segment increased by 4.9 percent to 5.652 million standard containers.
- At 14.7 percent, growth in volume transported by the Intermodal Segment continued in double digits to 1.42 million standard containers.
Revenues of the stock exchange listed Port Logistics sub-group, HHLA's core business, rose in the first nine months of 2008 by 15.8 percent to 984.8 million euros. The sub-group's EBIT continued to grow disproportionately, by 31.7 percent to 279.3 million euros. The Port Logistics sub-group thus generated 97.8 percent of Group earnings and 96.8 percent of Group EBIT.
Among the factors responsible for this continuing positive trend are:
- HHLA succeeded in countering the slowdown in momentum behind container handling volume, by further increasing the depth of services provided.
- The growth rate in transport volume of HHLA's intermodal companies remained in double digits.
- Boosts in productivity and efficiency led to a reduction in the proportion of total expenditure accounted for by material and staff.
- Thanks to the flexibility and scalability of its investment programme, HHLA can adapt the pace and scheduling of capacity expansion to the actual market trend.
During the first three quarters of 2008 HHLA also systematically pursued its modernization and growth programme. Among the main features in the third quarter were the delivery of five state-of-the-art container gantry cranes for the expansion of HHLA Container Terminal Burchardkai, HHLA's intermodal affiliate Transfracht's stake in the new inland terminal in Bamberg, and continuation of the expansion of the O'Swaldkai Multi-Functional Terminal for fruit and vehicle logistics.
In view of the depth of the present crisis, the further prospects for the business year 2009 are beset by considerable uncertainties. Nevertheless, in view of its strategic focus on technological leadership and vertical integration along the transport chain, as well as its positioning as a logistics provider for the emerging economies in Asia as well as Central and Eastern Europe, HHLA reckons with favourable prospects for business once again in the medium to long term. "With its solid balance sheet structure, its integrated business model and its scaleable expansion programme, HHLA is well equipped to stand its ground even difficult periods for the economy," said Klaus-Dieter Peters
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