Maersk: Higher rates will offset impact of cyberattack

Reuters

Reuters

The result included only a part of the estimated $200-300 million loss related to the "Petya" cyberattack on Maersk Line and APM Terminals in late June. The guidance for 2017 excludes the acquisition of Hamburg Süd. Merck and WPP also said NotPetya had affected operations.

The company will register the hit in the third quarter, with the impact on second-quarter results minimal.

Mr. Skou estimates that Maersk Line lost out on carrying 70,000 40-foot containers during the first two weeks of July as customers had to use other firms. "The profit was $490m higher than the same quarter a year ago, based on higher rates", said group chief executive Søren Skou.

Mr Skou said Maersk Line had "no ambition to gain a lot of market share this year" and accepted that the carrier had "used the price war to gain market share" in previous years.

For the quarter ended June 30, the group posted a net loss of $269 million, compared with a net profit of $101 million a year earlier.

Today, the company said the shutdown had resulted in "significant business interruption", but added: "No data breach or data loss to third-parties has occurred".

Maersk notes that its focus on cost efficiency across all of the group's businesses "remains high". This was said by the CEO in an interview with the Financial Times. If no further ships were ordered, the orderbook would be down to 7 percnet by the end of 2018 and 1 percent by the end of 2019. It said gross capital expenditure for 2017 is still expected to be between $5.5 billion and $6.5 billion compared with $5.0 billion a year ago.

Mr. Skou expects more consolidation in container shipping as smaller operators won't be able to compete with bigger players that have grouped into three main alliances to cut costs by sharing ships and port calls. At the group level, Maersk, which has a oil, gas, and drilling interests outside of its transportation division, saw operating profit fall 54 percent in the second quarter to $302 million, based on impairments amounting to $732 million incurred by APMT, Maersk Tankers, and its towage and salvage division Svitzer.

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