Wilh. Wilhelmsen ASA - Fourth quarter results for 2012

Shipping volumes were flat compared to third quarter 2012. Auto volumes grew while high and heavy cargo volumes continued to slide. The US flagged shipping operation recorded weak performance, while the logistics segment delivered stable earnings adjusted for seasonal variations. One new vessel was delivered to the group companies ; not for WWASA's account.

Operating profit grew by 87% in 2012, ending at USD 547 mill. (USD 292 mill.) while total income rose by 21% ending at USD 2 949 mill. (USD 2 422 mill.). The good financial performance was positively impacted by a sales gain of USD 134 mill. in connection with the 2.5% share reduction in Hyundai Glovis in the third quarter of 2012. Fourth quarter operating profit slid by 9% year over year, ending at USD 81 mill. (USD 89 mill.). Revenue in the same period remained relatively flat, totalling USD 659 mill. (USD 670 mill.).

"Auto volumes picked up from the previous quarter, supported by stronger export volumes from Korea. High and heavy shipping volumes, healthy in the first half year, slipped in the third and fourth quarters. This had a negative impact on the group's profitability but was somewhat offset by fleet optimisation," says Jan Eyvin Wang, president and CEO of WWASA.

"Our logistics segment is developing steadily, with an operating profit of USD 91 mill., 15% up over last year," adds Wang.

The board has announced that at the Annual General Meeting in 2013 it will propose to pay a dividend of NOK 4.00 per share reflecting both solid results and the capital gain in 2012.

Global economic growth continues to be hampered by uncertainty.

The board expects cargo volumes to remain soft during the early part of 2013. Long term positive underlying growth potential for both cargo segments combined with a sound financial position gives WWASA a solid platform to gradually invest in fleet modernisation and integrated land-based logistics services.

Source: NewsWeb