Neptune Orient Lines Swings to First Profit in Six Quarters

APL is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Singapore-based Neptune Orient Lines. Sheila Fitzgerald / Shutterstock.com
APL is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Singapore-based Neptune Orient Lines. Photo: Sheila Fitzgerald / Shutterstock.com

 

ReutersSINGAPORE, July 30 (Reuters) – Singapore’s Neptune Orient Lines Ltd (NOL) swung to a tiny net profit in its second quarter after six straight quarters of losses but said it had seen severe freight rate erosion.

“The group’s container shipping business continued to face a challenging environment characterized by over-capacity and weak market demand,” NOL Group CEO Ng Yat Chung said in a statement on Thursday. (http://bit.ly/1MVRJnG)

The container shipping line, controlled by Singapore’s state investor Temasek Holdings, reported a net profit of $3 million in the quarter ending June 30 versus a net loss of $54 million a year earlier.

People familiar with the matter told Reuters this month that Temasek had hired a bank to seek buyers for NOL. Temasek has declined comment, while NOL has said it not made any decision on a potential sale of the company.

NOL said that following the sale of its APL Logistics unit for $1.24 billion, it had used the proceeds to reduce its debt. (Reporting by Rujun Shen and Anshuman Daga; Editing by Prateek Chatterjee)

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