The results of the first quarter were mostly affected by the restrictions on the movement of passengers imposed in mid-March due to the COVID-19 pandemic, as a result of which several passenger ships of international lines stopped their traffic. As a result, Group’s revenues from shipping fees and, due to the lack of passengers, passenger fees decreased even more significantly. However, the continuation of freight transport kept many passenger ships in service, some of them with a sparse schedule.
In the first quarter, the volume of investments more than doubled compared to the same period last year. Mainly due to the continuation of the construction works of the passenger terminal D and the beginning of the construction of the cruise terminal in the Old City Harbour and the dredging and expansion works of the entrance channel of the Paldiski South Harbour.
Revenue for the first quarter of 2020 decreased by EUR 0.6 million, i.e. 2.2%, year on year. In terms of revenue streams, the biggest drop was in electricity sales: EUR 0.5 million, i.e. 28%, due to a decline in the consumption of electricity and network service at harbours (a mild winter being a factor) and a decrease in the price of electricity. Revenue increased in the segments of Ferry and Other but decreased in Passenger harbours and Cargo harbours segments.
Passenger harbours revenue decreased mainly in passenger fees (EUR (–0.4 million) due to a decrease in the number of passengers in the second half of March as a result of movement restrictions imposed in connection with COVID-19. The decrease was offset by an increase of nearly EUR 0.2 million in vessel dues revenue, which resulted mainly from growth in the estimated average annual port call revenue, attributable to a decrease in the average vessel-based discount on tonnage charges resulting from a decline in the annual number of port calls (due to the COVID-19 measures).
The revenue of the Cargo harbours segment decreased by almost EUR 0.4 million, mainly due to a decrease in revenue from electricity and network charges (through the combined effect of a decrease in consumption and the electricity price). Revenue from vessel dues and cargo charges decreased somewhat because of a fall in the number of port calls by container ships and an increase in the volume and share of liquid bulk cargo whose charges are lower than those of other cargo types.
Ferry segment revenue grew by EUR 0.2 million i.e. by 2.8%, mainly because the fee rates, which are linked to the Estonian consumer and fuel price indices and wage inflation, were higher than in the comparative period.
The revenue of the segment Other grew through the indexation of the contractual fees of the icebreaker Botnica to the Estonian consumer price index.
Adjusted EBITDA decreased by EUR 0.7 million (4.1%), slightly less than operating profit because the growth in depreciation, amortisation and impairment expenses did not affect EBITDA. Adjusted EBITDA margin dropped from 59.1% to 58.0%.
Profit amounted to EUR 10.0 million, EUR 1.0 million (–9,6%) less than in the comparative period last year.
The Group’s capital investments of the period totaled EUR 8.8 million. The figure is larger than the one for the same period last year when investments amounted to EUR 3.9 million.
The investments were mainly related to the reconstruction of passenger terminal D at the Old City Harbour, the start of the construction of a cruise terminal and dredging works at the Paldiski South Harbour.
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