Despite reduced passenger volumes due to late Easter, Danish-based shipping and logistics company DFDS reported strong performance in the North Sea in the first quarter of 2017, where freight volumes were up by 10% compared to 2016.The growth was highest on the Netherlands-UK and Sweden-Belgium corridors where capacity was increased, the company said.Cargo volumes in the Baltic Sea were 19.2% above 2016 during 1Q 2017 and flat after adjustment for the addition of a new route between Hanko, Finland, and Paldiski, Estonia. Last year, DFDS acquired the route from Estonian company Navirail OÜ.Additionally, freight volumes in the Channel rose by 3.3% while passenger volumes decreased by 14.4% in 1Q.In France and the Mediterranean, freight volumes in 1Q were 2.8% above 2016 while passenger volumes declined by 17.3% primarily driven by the Eastern timing difference.Overall passenger volumes were 10% lower than last year mainly due to Easter falling in 2Q in 2017 vs 1Q in 2016.What is more, the company’s financial results show that DFDS recorded a 4.3 percent increase in its revenue during 1Q 2017 which rose to DKK 3.2 million from DKK 3.1 million posted in the same period last year.The group’s revenue increased by 4.3% in 1Q and stood at DKK 3.2 million (around USD 0.5 million), against 3.1 million posted in the same quarter a year earlier.“We achieved a 1Q-result ahead of last year. Combined with a continued positive outlook for growth in Europe, we are on track in 2017 to further improve on the all-time high results of last year,” Niels Smedegaard, DFDS’ CEO, commented.In its outlook for 2017, the company said it expects the revenue to increase by around 4% excluding bunker surcharges.In addition, investments are expected to amount to around DKK 1.7 billion in 2017. This includes the purchase of two Channel ferries in June 2017 which were delivered in February 2016.
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