Boskalis Boosts Profit

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Royal Boskalis Westminster N.V. (Boskalis) realized a net profit attributable to shareholders of EUR 490.3 million, compared to EUR 365.7 million in 2013.

During the past year revenue rose by 1% to EUR 3.167 billion (2013: EUR 3.144 billion). Adjusted for acquisitions, deconsolidations and divestments revenue fell by 2%.

EBITDA rose by 25 per cent to EUR 946 million (2013: EUR 757 million) and the operating result (EBIT) was up 41 per cent at EUR 652 million (2013: EUR 463 million).

Across the board, 2014 was an operationally strong year with in addition a large number of exceptional items for a total amount on balance of EUR 200 million before tax. All three segments achieved a sharply higher result compared to 2013. Dredging & Inland Infra had a busy year with good fleet utilization, good project margins and substantial settlement results on old projects. Offshore Energy also had a good year with high fleet utilization and good project margins. Moreover, Dockwise contributed an extra quarter to earnings compared to 2013 and realized exceptional cancellation and rescheduling fees. Towage & Salvage reported a higher result with good results from the settlement of old salvage projects.

Peter Berdowski, CEO Boskalis, said: “We look back on a fantastic 2014, a year in which we achieved a very strong performance across the full breadth of our activities. In this context, it is worth noting that the result Dockwise achieved in its first full year with the group was an all-time high.

Despite being busy in the past year we made significant progress in optimizing our organization and the business processes, in accordance with our 2014-2016 Business Plan. The introduction of the previously announced divisional model has now been implemented, and the physical integration of Dockwise and Fairmount in Papendrecht is being completed.

The great result in 2014 has enabled us to strengthen our balance sheet sooner than we expected, with the solvency ratio now exceeding 53%. And so amid turbulent conditions we came to the end of a fantastic year, with a strong balance sheet and a streamlined organization.

The current market environment offers a mixed picture, with stability for both Dredging & Inland Infra and Towage, but challenging conditions for Offshore Energy in the capacity-driven spot markets, especially at Subsea Services as well as parts of Transport. On the other hand the current market also presents opportunities, even for selective growth. Any growth opportunities will be considered with the necessary caution to ensure that we remain strong and healthy.”

According to Boskalis, no major changes are expected in the Dredging & Inland Infra and Towage markets relative to 2014. Based on the current order book, the Dredging fleet utilization levels are expected to be good. However, the company says the outlook for Offshore Energy is mixed, with long-term contracts and work already contracted expected to provide an important degree of stability, whilst the spot market-related Transport activities and Subsea Services are experiencing pressure on utilization levels and margins.

The project-based nature of a significant part of our activities makes it difficult to give a specific quantitative forecast for the full-year result early on in the year. In light of this we are currently unable to provide quantitative guidance with regard to the 2015 full-year result. However, it is already clear that the contribution from possible exceptional items will be substantially lower in 2015 than the EUR 200 million contributed to EBIT in 2014.

Boskalis expects capital expenditure in 2015 to be EUR 250-275 million and will be financed from the company’s own cash flow.

In 2014 Boskalis acquired, on balance, EUR 2,941 million worth of new contracts. At the end of the year the order book, excluding our share in the order book of joint ventures and associated companies, stood at EUR 3,286 million (end-2013: EUR 3,323 million).

Furthermore, the company was currently unable to provide quantitative guidance with regard to the 2015 full-year result. However, Boskalis said  it is already clear that the contribution from possible exceptional items will be substantially lower in 2015 than the EUR 200 million contributed to EBIT in 2014.

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