Cargotec reports challenging first quarter

By Sarah Ann McCay06 May 2012

Cargotec reported a decline in orders for the first quarter of 2012, attributed to a slow down in new ship orders worlwide.

Orders for the crane and materials handling equipment manufacturer for the first quarter of 2012 were €787 million (US$ 1,029 million), down 10% on 2011 figures, which saw orders of €819 million (US$1,070 million). Order book figures also showed a decline, totalling €2342 million (US$ 3065 million), a slight decrease on Q1, 2011, which held order book figures of €2,426 million (US$3,175 million).

Operating profit for the quarter was €37.6 million (US$50 million), down from €50.6 million (US$66 million) in the same period in 2011. Net income also dropped, to €26.2 million (US$35 million), from €36.2 million (US$ 47 million) in the previous year.

On the positive side, sales for the Helsinki-based company rose 4% to €793 million (US$ 1,037 million). Cargotec forecasts that sales in its terminals and load handling segments will grow, with the company expecting total sales and operating profit margin figures for 2012 to come in higher than 2011.

"During the first quarter, market activity was healthy, even though orders lagged behind those of the comparison period. Although the low level of new ship orders was evident in marine's order intake, in accordance with our expectations the focus of orders is shifting from merchant ships to offshore. In load handling, orders for the first quarter grew by 22%. Due to stronger order books and successful deliveries by terminals and load handling, our sales developed favourably. However, profitability fell short of our target. Although terminals did not progress as planned, we are confident of an improvement for the full year," said Mikael Mäkinen, Cargotec president and CEO.

The company initiated plans to list its marine segment on the Singapore Exchange in March, to secure further growth. It plans to report on this by the end of the third quarter.

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