Westports quarterly net profit up 12% to RM159mil


“Westports has sustained its favourable container throughput growth momentum against a backdrop of a moderate industry expansion rate due to strong support from its clients, including liners under the Ocean Alliance, as the latter uses Westports as one of its transshipment hubs in South-East Asia, ” group managing director Datuk Ruben Emir Gnanalingam said.

PETALING JAYA: Westports Holdings Bhd has reported that its net profit rose 11.88% year-on-year in its third quarter ended Sept 30.

Net profit rose to RM159.24mil from RM142.32mil in the previous corresponding quarter, while revenue also rose to RM460.43mil from RM417.55mil before.

The company said in a statement that the improved quarterly and year-to-date financial results were due to the higher container volume handled and stable reported cost of sales under the new accounting rules, the Malaysian Financial Reporting Standards 16.

Earnings per share for the quarter was at 4.67 sen from 4.17 sen previously.

Westports achieved another consecutive record-breaking container throughput level in the third quarter by handling 2.77 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs), while the nine-month volume rose 16% over the previous corresponding period to 8.04 million TEUs.

“Westports has sustained its favourable container throughput growth momentum against a backdrop of a moderate industry expansion rate due to strong support from its clients, including liners under the Ocean Alliance, as the latter uses Westports as one of its transshipment hubs in South-East Asia, ” group managing director Datuk Ruben Emir Gnanalingam said.

“The supportive growth at the Intra-Asian segment has also provided a broad base momentum to enable the company to attain its container volume growth of 16%, which is well above the industry average, ” he added.

He said the company has accommodated a greater proportion of ultra-large container vessels (ULCV) at its berths, especially at the newer wharves that have been built in recent years, following the liner industry’s move to deploy bigger container vessels.

Moving forward, Gnanalingam said the company is expecting a double-digit percentage growth rate in capacity from 2018.

“In order to support our clients’ growth and the industry’s trend of deploying ever-larger ULCV, Westports is planning for a multi-billion container terminal expansion that would double our total terminal handling capacity, ” he said.

“The significant investments required would be funded by Westports and financings raised from the capital markets. Westports’ expanded facilities would also further strengthen Port Klang’s role as the pre-eminent port for the nation’s gateway trade, and also reinforce our terminal as one of the main transshipment hubs in the South-East Asian region for international container shipping alliances, ” he added.

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