- Highlights of 2017: A new set-up of the company
- Highlights of 2016: An active NORDEN in challenging markets
- Highlights of 2015: Historically miserable dry cargo market – record result in tanker
- Previous years
1. Highlights of 2017: A new set-up of the company
In many ways, 2017 marked the beginning of a new NORDEN.
We added a new business unit to the company by splitting the Dry Cargo business into a Dry Operator and a Dry Owner. With the split, NORDEN has built a strong platform for increased value generation and prepared NORDEN to deliver improved results and increased value for our shareholders.
We are off to a good start turning 5 years of losses into an adjusted result for 2017 of USD 28 million.
The value of operator activity
Like other shipowners, NORDEN actively manages an asset portfolio of dry cargo vessels and product tankers through the industry cycles, but what really differentiates NORDEN is the ability to create additional value as an operator. By splitting the Dry Cargo business into Dry Operator and Dry Owner, it is our ambition to achieve more transparency of the value creation in the Company, increase the operator activity contribution to the bottom-line and unleash the full potential of our organisation.
Dry Operator handles NORDEN’s shortterm operator activities and during the year, it was organised into 9 specialised teams with deep market insights making NORDEN even better at both servicing existing customers and generating new business. The new set-up also promotes a mindset with focus on quick decision-making with extensive professional support from both digital applications and supporting initiatives by other parts of the organisation.
A key element in our efforts for 2018 is to make use of the scalability of the set-up to generate further asset light growth and profitability in this new operator platform. We believe that Dry Operator offers significant potential for growth and attractive returns.
Tanker capacity significantly increased
In Tankers, NORDEN used the year to expand the tanker fleet. This was done by utilising the weak market and benefiting from having close ties with Japanese tonnage owners and yards. In total, NORDEN has added what is the equivalent of more than 71 vessel years to the tanker fleet and is thereby well-positioned for improving tanker markets.
We have increased our fleet knowing that NORDEN through the operational platform of Norient Product Pool is able to generate average earnings well above the market, and we look forward to utilising the extra capacity to generate further earnings in the coming years.
New board members
At the general meeting in 2017, 2 new board members with considerable international experience from well-respected trading and shipping companies were elected. The new members add valuable skills that among other things have been instrumental in the making of Dry Operator and our new set-up.
With our ambition to grow our activities significantly and develop a more agile business model, we have strengthened our risk management capabilities. This is supported by the establishment of a Board Risk Committee with the purpose of assisting the Board of Directors in its oversight of the Company’s overall risk-taking, tolerance and management of financial risks, including market, credit and liquidity risks.
Even though NORDEN can present the first positive adjusted results for the year since 2011, the Board of Directors recommends that no dividend is paid out to the shareholders. Our priority is to maintain financial strength in what is still relatively weak markets. However, our objective is once again to be able to pay out dividends to the shareholders. With our many initiatives in 2017 and previous years, we are on the right track but of course market developments remain an important factor to consider.
Continuing digitalisation of the business
Today, a substantial part of the business processes at NORDEN are digitalised, e.g.: A digital traffic light that informs the operator of the optimal vessel speed; extensive data capture and processing that support the market research and positioning of NORDEN; and real-time financial performance figures that are available to our individual commercial teams.
NORDEN will pursue further digital opportunities knowing that digitalisation is more than processes and systems - it is also a question of mindset. It is about being curious, seeing opportunities, being prepared for the unexpected and being able to adapt. The NORDEN organisation has this mindset, and we will make use of it in our continued digital efforts to increase efficiency, support decision-making and capture even more value for NORDEN in the years to come.
We expect both dry cargo and tanker markets to improve in 2018 even though weak tanker rates at the start of the year indicate that the improvement for tankers will only be gradual.
With a new, agile business unit in the form of Dry Operator, a Dry Owner spot exposure of approximately 10,000 days, an increase in tanker capacity, a skilled organisation with a winning mentality and state-of-the art systems, NORDEN is well-positioned to benefit from these improvements. On that basis, the adjusted results for the year 2018 is expected to amount to USD 10 to 50 million.
The expected result is a reflection of an underlying improvement in dry cargo but also a tanker market that has started the year with very weak levels. Furthermore, the expectations reflect the many initiatives and daily efforts made by the employees in NORDEN.
Every person and action matters.
2. Highlights of 2016: An active NORDEN in challenging markets
NORDEN’s adjusted results for 2016 amounted to a loss of USD 35 million. Although the results are in line with the most recently announced expectations, and NORDEN generated earnings in Dry Cargo and Tankers which were 19% and 7%, respectively, above the market, the results
clearly indicate that 2016 was a particularly difficult year and of course not satisfactory.
The results were generated in 2 markets moving in very different directions. From the historical low in February, the dry cargo market gradually improved, while the markets within NORDEN’s other large business area, product tankers, started the year with good rates that dropped considerably as more product tankers were delivered, and demand growth declined. Based on this year's results, the Board of Directors recommends that no dividend is paid out for 2016.
A year of initiatives
The markets generally developed as expected in 2016, and in accordance with the strategy Focus & Simplicity, NORDEN positioned itself to the markets with a large number of initiatives, both in the short and long term. By entering into 31 agreements, we have adjusted our fleet to meet the strategy and optimised it to fit the markets. The agreements have, among other things, involved postponement of deliveries of owned and long-term chartered vessels, conversion of a long-term chartered Capesize vessel to Supramax vessels as well as cost savings by prepaying some of the hire on parts of the chartered fleet.
The fleet optimisation was carried out at the same time as NORDEN strengthened its position during the year through a number of other measures:
- Net commitments were reduced by USD 369 million, corresponding to 37%.
- 4 long-running cargo contracts – including the largest contract in terms of volume in the history of the Company – was entered into, whereby NORDEN added more than 30 million tonnes of cargo to its portfolio.
- 9 vessels outside of the primary vessel types were sold, and NORDEN consequently no longer owns Capesize and Post-Panamax vessels.
- Annual operating costs related to owned vessels and voyage costs were reduced by USD 15 million.
- Operator activities in Dry Cargo increased by 7% added short-term chartered ship days.
- Exposure to the increasingly weaker tanker market was reduced, and early 2017 the Company had 21% fewer open days in the coming year than when entering 2016.
As a result of the above initiatives as well as a number of other measures, NORDEN is still reasonably positioned in spite of the challenging market conditions seen in 2016. The Company’s financial position remains sound with cash and securities amounting to USD 264 million. To this should be added undrawn credit facilities of USD 250 million. NORDEN has consequently maintained its room for manoeuvre and a suitable exposure to the markets.
Execution of strategy
By applying the measures, NORDEN has continued the execution of the Focus & Simplicity strategy, which was drawn up at the end of 2015. A recurring feature is that we focus on the areas where NORDEN is already well-positioned. Based on NORDEN’s expertise, brand and market position, we have embarked on an asset light strengthening of our dry cargo business by increasing the operator activities within the vessel types Handysize, Supramax and Panamax.
NORDEN will continue to own a considerable fleet of Supramax and Panamax vessels, however, the number will be relatively lower in comparison with an increasing share of chartered vessels with relatively short charter periods. Long-term exposure and risk towards the market is thus adjusted and reduced, while the Company maintains its earnings potential.
Within Tankers, NORDEN continues its activities within the MR and Handysize vessel types in commercial management in the product tanker pool Norient Product Pool (NPP), of which NORDEN owns 50%. Through the years, NPP has managed to generate earnings above market levels, and we expect this to continue.
New overall purpose
We focus on the vessels as well as the organisational side of NORDEN. The vessels in the form of our core fleet of owned and long-term chartered vessels supplemented by an increasing number of short-term chartered vessels within Dry Cargo. The organisational side is represented by NORDEN’s many employees, who make a considerable daily effort to make the best of the opportunities which the markets have to offer.
In 2016, NORDEN formulated a new overall objective for its activities – a Corporate Soul Purpose: As custodians of smarter global trade, we are conscious, soulful people uniting a world where every person and action matters.
In 2017, we expect a dry cargo market which will continue to improve gradually and a tanker market which on average will be at a lower level than in 2016. Against that background, we expect adjusted annual results for 2017 of USD -20 million to USD 40 million.
It requires focus and a large degree of cost consciousness to act in such markets, and we will continue the ongoing cost-saving programme on the operation of the fleet and at the same time strengthen our business. Strategically within the dry cargo business, we will continue with asset light growth with the strengthening of the operator activities, because despite the fact that we expect low average rate levels, volatility and a good combination of vessels and cargoes continue to make it possible to generate a margin as an operator. Thus, our dry cargo activities will undergo a considerable transformation in the coming years towards a larger operated fleet, changes to our systems, processes and organisation – including increased use of digital information, which improve the basis for decision-making – as well as strengthened interaction with customers.
In the tanker market, we took advantage of the low market rates and the reduced ship day capacity, and we consequently added extra capacity at the end of 2016. We will continuously adjust our exposure to the market and on the basis of insight and experience assess when to add extra capacity and when to get cover.
With a competent organisation, strong and close relationships with customers and partners, streamlined processes and sound finances, NORDEN is still in its 147th year of existence well positioned to serve its customers and ensure smarter global trade while the Company also develops for the benefit of its shareholders. We are proud of the Company but not of the fact that we once again present a negative result to our shareholders in the expectation that the difficulties will continue in the current year. But we are, however, convinced that by implementation of the many measures in recent and coming years, we are creating the grounds for a competitive and profitable NORDEN.
3. Highlights of 2015: Historically miserable dry cargo market – record result in tanker
A historically miserable dry cargo market has had a very clear impact on the results for the year, which amounted to an unsatisfactory loss of USD 285 million, and were thus in line with the most recently announced expectations, as EBIT totalled USD -282 million.
The results were impacted by a write-down and provision of a total of USD 340 million, which NORDEN made based on heavily decreasing ship values and the prospect of a continued very weak dry cargo market. Against this background, the Board of Directors proposes that no dividend is paid out for 2015.
The dry cargo sector is undergoing structural changes with no growth in demand for seaborne transportation as a consequence of China’s transformation from an industry-driven to a service-driven economy. This slowdown in the heavy industry in China is more pronounced than expected and has dealt a heavy blow to the dry cargo market – and, thereby to NORDEN – in a time, where the world fleet continues to grow due to a sizeable number of newbuilding deliveries until 2017. This has led to considerable excess tonnage capacity, which can only be expected to be reduced gradually as a result of scrapping of old vessels.
The result before write-down and provision amounted to USD 55 million, not least owing to a record result (EBIT) of USD 117 million from NORDEN’s tanker activities, where the Company with low coverage was well positioned to take advantage of the strong tanker market. This was, however, not enough to offset the EBIT result from NORDEN’s dry cargo activities, which including write-down and provision constituted a loss of USD 386 million. The underlying operating result for Dry Cargo came to a loss of USD 8 million before write-down, provision and vessel sales.
TCE earnings in both Tankers and Dry Cargo were considerably above the market. On average the tanker fleet generated earnings 27% above the 1-year T/C rates, while earnings from dry cargo activities with high coverage and good operation were 37% above the 1-year T/C rates. Just as important, cash flows from operations amounted to USD 77 million, which provides comfort in difficult times.
NORDEN has focused its efforts on improving the Company’s position and adjusting the exposure to the very different market conditions:
- The core fleet has been adjusted. 9 vessels were sold corresponding to 15% of the owned fleet at the beginning of the year. Combined with increased coverage, the number of open ship days in dry cargo has been reduced by 24% for 2016 and 2017.
- NORDEN has reduced the charter-in costs by entering into attractive agreements with shipowners on prepayments of part of the hire in return for future hire reductions.
- The Company’s total net commitments, including bank debt, lease liabilities and newbuilding payments, have been reduced by 21% compared to last year.
- Cash and securities have increased by USD 127 million to USD 366 million by the end of the year. To this should be added undrawn credit facilities of USD 297 million.
- A new strategy with increased customer focus has been initiated, business procedures have been simplified, and annual savings of USD 9 million on the vessels’ operating and voyage related costs have been identified and achieved.
With the new strategy “Focus & Simplicity”, NORDEN focuses its efforts within areas, where the Company already holds a strong position. This involves focus on fewer vessel types, intensified customer focus including more regional offices and offering increased flexibility and reliability to customers.
The starting point is good: NORDEN is financially sound and has a modern fleet and a very skilled organisation. NORDEN will thus weather this storm as well – the Company has, after all, experienced a few of these during its 145 years in the business.
4. Previous years
HIGHLIGHTS OF 2014: Downturn in the dry cargo market
NORDEN’s results in 2014 were heavily impacted by the severe downswing in the dry cargo market. Directly contrary to the expectations for gradual improvement, the dry cargo market severely worsened in 2014. The tanker market was lower than expected in the first nine months but did provide a strong end to the year.
EBITDA constituted a loss of USD 261 million, which was in line with the most recently announced expectations and significantly impacted by the provision for onerous time charter contracts of USD 230 million made at the end of 2014. Thus, underlying operations amounted to an EBITDA of USD -31 million. Results for the year, which was also negatively affected by value adjustments on hedging instruments, amounted to USD -416 million. The results are not satisfactory.
EBITDA in Dry Cargo amounted to USD -294 million. Earnings in Dry Cargo were 2% above the 1-year T/C rates and 35% above the spot market. The Tanker Department generated an EBITDA of USD 44 million and managed to outperform the 1-year T/C rates by 6%.
Fourth quarter – significant drop in dry cargo, strong finish in tankers
The disappointing market development within dry cargo continued unabated into the fourth quarter, which is usually the strongest quarter of the year. Following a short-lived improvement in November, rates dropped significantly in December, and EBITDA in the Dry Cargo Department for the fourth quarter totalled USD -257 million. Based on an updated market analysis, the Company made a provision of USD 230 million for a number of time charter contracts on chartered dry cargo vessels. The updated market analysis proved that it was no longer likely that these contracts, which were primarily entered into in 2006-11, would be profitable as the dry cargo market is not expected to improve to the extent first anticipated within the next couple of years.In the tanker market, rates increased markedly in the fourth quarter and remained high for the rest of the year. NORDEN’s Tanker Department was well positioned to benefit from the increasing rates and generated an EBITDA of USD 25 million.
Based on the increasingly challenging markets in dry cargo, the Company has launched a number of initiatives. NORDEN has:
- reduced the number of chartered dry cargo vessels by 21%.
- put investment programme on hold.
- sold 4 vessels in 2014 and 1 in 2015 with total proceeds in 2014 and 2015 of USD 112 million.
- improved the working capital by USD 34 million.
- increased coverage in Dry Cargo for 2015 significantly to 55%.
- secured new credit facilities of USD 221 million.
- initiated streamlining of costs with the target of saving USD 20 million per year within 3 years.
- reorganised the Dry Cargo Department to improve NORDEN's flexibility and position in the market.
- launched additional fuel saving initiatives in the core fleet with the target of a 3% reduction in 2015.
- achieved hire savings of USD 10.5 million on 9 chartered vessels.
The Board of Directors proposes that no dividend is paid out for 2014
HIGHLIGHTS OF 2013: A year of investment
As expected, 2013 was a challenging year, which in advance had been proclaimed a year of investment, not a year of profit making. NORDEN’s EBITDA for 2013 amounted to USD 24 million (USD 148 million in 2012). This was slightly below the latest announced expectations (USD 25-45 million). Results for the year constituted a loss of USD 48 million, which is not satisfactory.
In spite of the lower EBITDA compared to the year before, 2013 marked a turn for the better in a number of areas within NORDEN’s business segments Dry Cargo and Tankers; the Tanker Department delivered the best results since 2008, the year was a historically large investment year and ship values increased in both segments.
Throughout the year, the Company took advantage of the attractive newbuilding prices to invest in 18.5 vessels, of which 9 are owned and 9.5 are long-term charters with purchase option. All of them are fuel efficient eco vessels, which will provide NORDEN with long-term competitive advantages. Furthermore, NORDEN has ordered an additional 7.5 vessels at the beginning of 2014, which results in a total order book of 37 vessels representing total investments of more than USD 1 billion.
During the year, ship values increased, and at the end of the year, market valuations of NORDEN’s fleet were USD 92 million above the carrying amounts, which is an increase of USD 228 million compared to the year before. Cash flows from operating activities were negative USD 9 million and were negatively affected by
increased tied-up capital of USD 27 million primarily due a higher level of activity.
Difficult fourth quarter
The dry cargo market was standing still during most of the first half-year of 2013, but showed signs of improvement during the second half-year with the Baltic Dry Index increasing by 86% compared to the first half-year. The increase, which was stronger than foreseen, testifies to a market better balanced than expected,
which is also backed by the fact that the quarterly averages cover large fluctuations. Along with changes in trading patterns and regional imbalances, the high coverage in Dry Cargo, which had provided protection in the first half-year, meant that the Company was not positioned to benefit from the rates in the fourth quarter. Though rate increases benefited open ship days, especially in Post-Panamax, these were more than cancelled out by higher costs for servicing a number of cargo contracts especially in Supramax and Handysize. Dry Cargo EBITDA therefore amounted to negative USD 14 million for the fourth quarter and negative USD 5 million for the whole year. Dry Cargo earnings were on average 17% above the 1-year T/C rates.
NORDEN’s Tanker Department was well positioned in a tanker market, which was particularly strong in the first nine months of the year. Tankers also managed to conclude the fourth quarter positively with an EBITDA of USD 9 million. The year in Tankers provided earnings, which were on average 7% above the 1-year T/C rates, and the Tanker Department generated an EBITDA of USD 39 million. Past years’ investments in the Tanker fleet are thus beginning to pay off.
The Board of Directors will propose a dividend of DKK 5 per share corresponding to USD 38 million excluding treasury shares.
HIGHLIGHTS OF 2012
Target reached in a challenging market.
NORDEN’s operating earnings (EBITDA) for 2012 amounted to USD 148 million. This is 21% down from 2011, but in the high end of the expectations (USD 110-150 million). The earnings were made in a challenging market, which, as expected, offered low freight rates, high fuel costs and many new vessels at sea.
Dry Cargo generated an EBITDA of USD 131 million, which is 24% down from last year but higher than the expectations announced for 2012 (USD 105-125 million). Market rates (Baltic Dry Index) were 41% lower on average than in 2011 primarily due to the record-high number of newbuilding deliveries. However, Dry Cargo was able to generate daily earnings considerably above the market, and despite the declining market, the Dry Cargo Department achieved USD 22 million in profit from operator activities during the year.
The tanker market started the year positively but was affected by weak demand and, consequently, low rates in the second and third quarters. At the end of the year, the rates improved, which the Tanker Department was well positioned to benefit from, and Tankers thus ended the year with an EBITDA of USD 28 million. The results are in line with 2011 and above the latest announced expectations for the year (USD 15-25 million). Similar to previous years, daily earnings in Tankers were above comparable market rates.
Vessel prices continued decreasing, and at the end of the first quarter 2012, the Company assessed that there was a need for writing down the book value of the vessels by USD 300 million. After additional ordinary depreciation of USD 89 million and loss on vessel sales of USD 24 million, EBIT amounted to a negative USD 265 million.
Cash flows from operating activities were USD 122 million (USD 120 million). Thus, the Company managed to generate positive cash flows even in a challenging year.
Following previous years with substantial investments in especially new tanker vessels, NORDEN adopted a wait-and-see attitude in a decreasing market in 2012. Focus has been on fuel optimisation of the fleet by selling modern vessels of an older design and replacing these with new and more fuel efficient vessels. Cash flows from vessel sales and fleet investments amounted to USD 6 million net.
The Board of Directors has decided to initiate a share buy-back programme over the next 4 quarters of up to USD 30 million and proposes a dividend of DKK 3 per share corresponding to USD 22 million, excluding treasury shares.
HIGHLIGHTS OF 2011
Results better than expected.
With an EBITDA of USD 186 million, operating earnings in 2011 were better than the original March estimates of USD 135-175 million. Due to the strong fourth quarter, earnings were also higher than the latest estimate from November of USD 160-180 million.
Dry Cargo entered into several short-term cargo contracts during the year and was generally geographically well-positioned. Daily earnings were 26% above the 1-year T/C rates. EBITDA in Dry Cargo of USD 171 million was better than expected. Adjusted for non-recurring items, earnings were only 7% lower than in 2010 even though spot rates decreased by 44%.
Tankers made an improved contribution to NORDEN’s operating earnings with an EBITDA of USD 26 million against a result of 0 the previous year. The improvement was a result of i.a. larger capacity and operational improvements. Daily earnings were 9% above the 1-year T/C rates.
As expected, NORDEN did not have any profits from the sale of vessels whereas these profits amounted to USD 28 million and USD 4 million in joint ventures in 2010.Decreasing vessel prices have made vessel sales less attractive, and at the same time, NORDEN has strategically decided to expand the fleet. Without profits from vessel sales and with depreciation increasing by 64% to USD 81 million, the operating profit (EBIT) was USD 104 million (USD 223 million). This is above the estimates from March and November.
Based on a net profit of USD 88 million (USD 245 million), the Board of Directors proposes a dividend of DKK 4 per share.
Cash flows from operating activities were USD 120 million. Investments in vessels, etc. amounted to USD 358 million (USD 663 million) while vessel sales generated proceeds of USD 28 million (USD 296 million).
HIGHLIGHTS OF 2010
Earnings increased sharply in 2010 with EBITDA growing 91% and EBIT 42%. Results were well above the original March estimate and in the upper end of the range recently announced by NORDEN in November.
Growth was mainly generated by Dry Cargo where NORDEN’s daily earnings were 7% higher than spot rates thanks to good coverage and operator activities. In addition to solid basic earnings, Dry Cargo had non-recurring income of USD 78 million. Exclusive of this non-recurring income, EBITDA rose by 23% in Dry Cargo.
Tankers recorded improved earnings as well. Results were significantly higher than the original March estimate and in the middle of the range announced by NORDEN in November. Spot rates rose during the year, and revenue from coverage and optimisations also contributed to Tankers’ daily earnings being 23% above the 1-year T/C rates.
Profit from the sale of vessels was USD 28 million (and USD 4 million in joint ventures), considerably lower than recent years. This is due to, among other things, a strategic decision to expand the core fleet by purchasing tanker vessels and the fact that vessel prices made sales less attractive. Investments in vessels and newbuildings amounted to USD 663 million, while vessel sales generated proceeds of USD 296 million.
- In Dry Cargo, EBITDA increased to USD 249 million and in Tankers to USD 0 million.
- NORDEN’s EBITDA increased by 91% to USD 240 million, and EBIT was up 42% to USD 223 million.
- Net profit increased by 13% to USD 245 million. Profit per share was DKK 33 (DKK 28).
- Net profit generated a return on equity of 13% (12%).
- Equity grew by 11% to USD 2 billion.
- Cash flows from operating activities went up by 86% to USD 298 million.
- The Board of Directors proposes a dividend of DKK 8 per share (DKK 7), and moreover, a share buyback programme has been initiated.
HIGHLIGHTS OF 2009
The Dry Cargo Department’s EBITDA fell by 70% to USD 139 million.
The Tanker Department’s EBITDA fell by 105% to USD -4 million.
NORDEN’s total EBITDA fell by 75% to USD 126 million.
NORDEN’s total EBIT fell by 80% to USD 157 million.
Net financials represented income of USD 7 million (USD 29 million).
Positive fair value adjustment of USD 61 million of certain hedging instruments (USD -81 million).
Net profit of USD 217 million, representing a return on equity of 12% (47%).
Cash and cash equivalents amounted to USD 711 million (USD 807 million).
Theoretical NAV decreased by 4% to DKK 268 per share.
The Board of Directors proposes a dividend of DKK 7 per share (DKK 13).
HIGHLIGHTS OF 2008
Although below expectations, NORDEN’s profit was the largest to date. The Dry Cargo Department’s EBITDA rose during the first three quarters but fourth quarter earnings dropped although the long-term coverage of the fleet provided some protection against the extremely low spot rates toward the end of the year. The Tanker Department’s earnings rose following a major addition of tonnage which was employed at attractive rates. NORDEN realised significant profits from the sale of vessels during the year.
The Dry Cargo Department's EBITDA was down 9% to USD 455 million.
The Tanker Department's EBITDA was up 26% to USD 67 million.
NORDEN’s total EBITDA was down 6% to USD 506 million.
Profits from the sale of vessels, etc. rose 78% to USD 290 million.
EBIT rose 13% to USD 773 million, corresponding to an EBIT margin of 18%.
Downward fair value adjustment of certain hedging instruments of USD 81 million.
Net financials represented income of USD 29 million.
The net profit for the year was up approximately 1% to USD 708 million or DKK 3,609 million.
The return on equity was 47% (70%).
Cash and cash equivalents rose by USD 187 million to USD 807 million.
The equity ratio rose approximately 2 percentage points to 83%.
The Board of Directors proposes a dividend of DKK 13 (DKK 35) per share.
HIGHLIGHTS OF 2007
The profit for the year was USD 703 million (2006: USD 177 million), equalling DKK 3,830 (DKK 1,050 million) translated at the average exchange rate for the year. This profit is four times the profit for the previous year and provides a return on average equity of 70% (27%).
The main explanations for the increased profit for the year is a higher operating profit in the Dry Cargo Department and larger profits from the sale of vessels (USD 163 million against USD 55 million).
The Dry Cargo Department’s profit before depreciation (EBITDA) was USD 497 million (USD 126 million), constituting a 296% increase. The increase was primarily explained by a good positioning and a very strong dry cargo market.
The Tanker Department’s EBITDA was up by 10% to USD 53 million (USD 48 million), driven by a higher level of activity and higher realised T/C equivalents in an otherwise weaker market.
Positive cash flows from operations were generated in the amount of USD 467 million (USD 123 million).
Equity grew to USD 1,311 million (USD 714 million).
The active fleet of owned and part owned vessels remained stable at 14 vessels, while the number of owned and part owned vessels for delivery rose from 14 to 35.
At the end of the year, the Company’s total theoretical NAV per share was estimated at DKK 614 (DKK 305). Of this, the value of the Company’s 75 (71) charter parties with purchase option amounted to DKK 323 per share (DKK 154). The calculation of Theoretical Net Asset Value is subject to significant uncertainty, however.
In the Company’s risk model, the gearing was reduced from 1.4 to 0.4 in the course of 2007. The main reasons for this reduction are a combination of larger equity and reduced net liabilities as a result of the sale of vessels and the conclusion of long-term coverage contracts at attractive levels.
The Board proposes a dividend of DKK 35 (DKK 5) per share, corresponding to a 44% (23%) payout ratio for the year.