Shipping giant CMA CGM posts quarterly profit of $7 billion

CMA CGM reported net profit of $7 billion in the third quarter, down slightly from the previous quarter, but 25% higher than last year despite global trade starting to show signs of slowing down, it said. the French group on Friday.

This result was obtained on a turnover of 19.91 billion dollars, an increase of almost 30% compared to last year, specified the shipowner who is however preparing for a more complicated, given the explosion in energy prices which is straining household budgets and slowing consumption, particularly in Europe.

Since the start of the year, the world’s third-largest shipowner has made a net profit of $21.8 billion, compared to $17.9 billion for the whole of 2021. A record performance that places CMA CGM on a par with other Hexagonal giants like TotalEnergies or the pharmaceutical group Sanofi that the left would like to see subject to a tax on “superprofits”.

“We are currently observing a drop in demand which is leading to a normalization of international economic exchanges and a significant drop in freight rates”, however noted the group’s CEO, Rodolphe SaadĂ©, quoted in the group’s results press release.

The shipowner’s gross operating surplus (Ebitda), a measure of operational performance, fell slightly between the second and third quarters of 2022 (-4.6% to 9.15 billion), in particular due to the normalization of freight rates which are gradually returning to their pre-Covid level after having exploded during the pandemic.

“The deterioration of the geopolitical context has also impacted the CMA CGM group”, explains the group, which figures the rise in energy prices for the shipowner at 822 million dollars over one year.

However, CMA CGM is confident as 2023 approaches an uncertain year for the economy and world trade. Debt was reduced to 78 million dollars at September 30, against 5.3 billion three months earlier.

The group intends to continue to invest, in particular to green its fleet of more than 580 ships. In recent months, he has also made use of his record profits to invest all over the place (Eutelsat, Air France-KLM) or buy companies in logistics (Colis Privé, Gefco, etc.) and the press (La Provence).

The Marseille shipowner will also be the jersey sponsor of Olympique de Marseille from next summer.

The acquisition of Gefco, a French car transporter, contributed to the strong growth of the logistics segment of CMA CGM which recorded a turnover of 4.34 billion dollars (+51.3% over one year) .

CMA CGM also recently acquired the port terminal of Nhava Sheva (western India) and wants to double its air freight fleet, currently composed of six aircraft, by 2026.