Stolt-Nielsen Limited (Oslo Børs: SNI) yesterday reported unaudited results for the fourth quarter ended November 30, 2016. Net profit attributable to shareholders in the fourth quarter was $22.8 million, with revenue of $463.0 million, compared with a net profit of $22.2 million, with revenue of $474.1 million, in the third quarter of 2016. Net profit attributable to shareholders for 2016 was $113.1 million, with revenue of $1,879.9 million, compared with a net profit of $132.7 million, and revenue of $1,983.7 million in 2015.
Chemical/Oil Products Tanker Stolt Emerald - Image courtesy: Roeland.J
Highlights for the fourth quarter of 2016, compared with the third quarter of 2016, were:
- Stolt Tankers reported an operating profit of $30.4 million, down from $31.4 million, as the chemical tanker market remained soft.
- The Stolt Tankers Joint Service Sailed-in Time-Charter Index decreased to 0.72 from 0.76.
- Stolthaven Terminals reported an operating profit of $14.0 million, down from $14.8 million.
- Stolt Tank Containers' operating profit climbed to $15.1 million, up from $10.7 million, reflecting a combination of higher profit margins due to lower ocean freight and repositioning costs, and lower administrative & general expenses.
- Stolt Sea Farm's operating profit before the fair value adjustment of inventories was $2.1 million, up from $1.9 million, as average prices for turbot and sole continued to show modest improvement in the quarter. The fair value adjustment had a positive impact of $0.6 million, unchanged from the previous quarter.
- Corporate and Other reported an operating loss of $10.0 million, compared with a loss of $6.7 million, due in part to a $2.7 million impairment for doubtful accounts receivable at Stolt Bitumen Services and costs of $2.2 million related to the acquisition of Jo Tankers.
Commenting on the Company's results, Mr. Niels G. Stolt-Nielsen, Chief Executive Officer of Stolt-Nielsen Limited, said: "Stolt-Nielsen's fourth-quarter results were essentially in line with our expectations. At Stolt Tankers, the softness we observed in the prior period continued into the fourth quarter. Stolthaven's results were essentially flat this quarter, though utilisation continued to edge upward, reflecting continued progress toward our goal of sustainable improvements in operational performance. At Stolt Tanker Containers, while total shipments were seasonally down, improvements in transportation margin per shipment suggest that price competition may be easing. At Stolt Sea Farm, while volumes of turbot sold were seasonally down, both turbot and sole prices continued to trend upward."
"Our outlook for 2017 remains largely unchanged from our previous guidance. In the markets served by Stolt Tankers, there is still an oversupply of tonnage, and with significant newbuilding deliveries in 2017, combined with a weak product tanker market, we believe the year will be challenging. However, with our COA portfolio and continued focus on cost reductions, we expect Stolt Tankers to remain profitable in the year ahead. At Stolthaven, our efforts to improve the operational performance of this business are starting to pay off, and we expect that trend to continue this year. For Stolt Tank Containers, which faced intense price competition in 2016, we see signs of a bottoming out of the margin deterioration, as profitability can be sacrificed by some operators for only so long in an effort to gain market share. At Stolt Sea Farm, we expect the strong prices for turbot and sole to continue."