November 12, 2021: Container carrier Hapag-Lloyd reported a 71 percent increase in revenue to $17.9 billion for the first nine months of 2021 compared to $10.5 billion in 9-months of 2020 on higher freight rates.

The average freight rate zoomed 66 percent to $1,818/TEU compared to $1,097/TEU in the year-ago period. Transport volume increased 3.3% to 8.9 million TEUs. "The development of volumes was negatively affected by the ongoing disruption to global supply chains."

The first nine months of the 2021 financial year were dominated by continuing strong demand for transport from the Far East to the rest of the world and the resulting operational challenges, the statement added. “The sharp rise in transport volumes and the effects of the COVID-19 protective measures led to congestion of port and hinterland infrastructure in North America and, increasingly, in Asia and Europe as well."

Despite all the operational challenges, we achieved an extraordinarily strong nine-month result, said Rolf Habben Jansen, CEO, Hapag-Lloyd. "However, global supply chains are under enormous pressure, which further intensified during the peak season in the third quarter. This unfortunately also creates additional operational burdens for carriers, ports and terminals – but, most importantly, for customers worldwide. We will do everything in our power to help with suitable offers and to do our part to resolve the situation through targeted investments and flexible capacity management.”

Transport expenses increased 16 percent to $9 billion, primarily due to higher container handling expenses and an increased average bunker consumption price, which stood at $452 per tonne compared to $420 per tonne last year.

While EBITDA rose to $8.2 billion, EBIT came in at $6.9 billion. Earnings per share jumped to $37.81 from $3.39 in the year-ago period.

"Due to the positive development of earnings, net debt was further reduced by $4.3 billion compared to December 31, 2020," the statement said.

At the end of September 30, 2021, Hapag-Lloyd’s fleet comprised 257 container ships as against 234 ships on September 30, 2020. "The takeover of NileDutch increased the fleet by 10 container ships," the statement said.

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