Shipping line Tallink has reported its first per-quarter profit since the coronavirus pandemic began, and was in the black to the tune of €5.5 million (unaudited net profit) in the third quarter of 2021 (Q3 2021), the company says. By comparison, in Q3 2020 Tallink posted losses of €23.9 million. The company says it has also made steps towards the off-season, starting this month, which, it says, will prove tough.
Tallink Group CEO Paavo Nõgene said of the results that they have been: "Achieved through a great team effort from everyone at Tallink across all our shores as well as extremely tight cost control measures. It is the first ray of light we have seen after a period where we have made a net loss of more than €151 million in roughly a year and a half."
"Despite high fuel prices and the continuing COVID impacts on our sector and company, I am pleased that we have been able to earn the first quarterly profit since the start of the continuing pandemic," Nõgene continued, according to a company press release.
"The quarter's results were supported by the re-opening of some of our routes for the first time since the start of the pandemic in March 2020 and short-term charter agreements for two of our vessels. For the first time since spring 2020, we only had one vessel suspended in port and all others operating, which has meant revenue, but most importantly work for our people whose numbers at the end of quarter three this year totalled just over 4,500," he went on, noting that other highlights included the new MyStar vessel, due to enter service next spring, and planned LNG vessel operations linking Tallinn and Helsinki.
Nonetheless, the company still faces a tough winter ahead, with high covid rates in Estonia and Latvia, high fuel prices and issues in the labor market. "We remain hopeful that late spring and early summer 2022 will show improvement in the overall situation and we anticipate seeing a marked increase in the number of passengers then."
Tallink Group Q3 2021 report, published Thursday, October 28, quick facts:
- Unaudited net profit: €5.5 million.
- Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA): €35.1 million (compared with €5.7 million in Q3 2020).
- Unaudited revenue rose by 18.6 percent on year, to €170.5 million.
- On-board restaurant and store sales, ticket revenue and charter revenue were biggest earners.
- Liquidity position ahead of off-season strengthened with Nordic Investment Bank loan plus additional shares emission from the company's stock in early September. Total liquidity buffer (cash, cash equivalents and unused credit facilities) as of 30 September 2021: €252.5 million (€ 115.0 million one year earlier 2020).
- Investments amounted to €3.7 million (compared with €54 million in Q3 2020).
First nine months (January 1-September 30) of 2021 quick facts
- Unaudited revenue fell by 14.7 on year, to €310.3 million.
- Unaudited EBITDA: €33.2 million (€6.9 million in 2020); unaudited net loss was €53.2 million (€81.5 million loss in 2020).
Editor: Andrew Whyte