ISRAELI flag carrier, New York-listed Zim, has reversed itself from a 2020 quarterly net loss of US$11.9 million to a 2021 first quarter profit of $589.6 million, drawn on revenues of $1.74 billion, up 111.9 per cent.
“We generated our highest ever quarterly net profit, EBITDA, and cash flow, while continuing to deliver industry leading margins. We also strengthened our balance sheet, with shareholder equity now in excess of $1 billion,” said Zim president and CEO Eli Glickman.
This good fortune was attributed soaring freight rates that increased 75 per cent to $1,925 per TEU year on year, said a Zim statement accompanying the results. This was a 76 per cent year-on-year increase.
The increased freight rate was boosted by a 28 per cent increase in volume, with 818,000 TEU carried in the first three months of 2021.
During the quarter, Zim signed a billion dollar deal with Seaspan to charter dual-fuel LNG containerships to be built at Samsung Heavy Industries. Zim also completed its IPO in January; the stock price fell short of its expected range and size, but shares have since tripled in price.
Said Mr Glickman: “We strengthened our position in the Pacific and intra-Asia trades, with our long-term chartering agreement for large LNG dual-fuel container vessels and the launch of new services to address unmet need in profitable routes to generate superior growth.
“We also drew on our strong cash flow to redeem Zim’s $349 million outstanding Series 1 and 2 Notes sooner than expected and earlier than the stated maturity by two years,” he said.