AP Møller–Mærsk has unveiled a strong Q2 performance on the back of a strong demand rebound – but warns of supply chain bottlenecks and equipment shortages
Maersk reported an unaudited revenue of US$14.2Bn, an underlying EBITDA of US$5.1Bn, up 26% quarter-on-quarter, and an underlying EBIT of US$4.1Bn for Q2 2021, a jump of 33% compared with the same period in 2020.
Maersk said in a statement, “The strong quarterly performance is mainly driven by the continuation of the exceptional market situation with a strong rebound in demand causing bottlenecks in the supply chains and equipment shortages.”
Ocean cargo volumes jumped by 15% and average freight rates soared by 59% in Q2 2021 compared with the previous year.
Maersk said that given the strong result in Q2 2021 and the “exceptional” market situation expected to continue at least until the end of the full-year 2021, the full year guidance for 2021 has been revised upwards with an underlying EBITDA now expected in the range of US$18-19.5Bn (previously US$13-15Bn) and underlying EBIT expected in the range of US$14-15.5Bn (previously US$9-11Bn).
Due to higher earnings expectations, and despite increasing net working capital and higher instalments related to higher charter lease liabilities, the free cash flow for the full-year 2021 is now expected to be US$11.5Bn (previously minimum US$7Bn), while the cumulative capex guidance for 2021-22 is unchanged at around US$7Bn.
The outlook for the global market demand growth for the full year 2021 has been revised up to 6-8% from previously 5-7%, which the shipping line said was primarily still driven by the export volumes out of China to the US.
Maersk said earnings in Q3 are expected to exceed the level for Q2 2021. But it warned, “Trading conditions for the quarters ahead are, however, still subject to a higher-than-normal volatility due to the temporary nature of current demand patterns, disruptions in the supply chains and equipment shortages.”
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