Chile's CSAV (Compania Sud Americana de Vapores), the biggest shipping line in Latin America, has reported its best quarter in history, with net profit coming in at US$149 million for three months ending September 30, drawing on revenues of $921 million, up 133 per cent over last year.
Vastly improved results were credited to a 74 per cent increase in volumes and a 24 per cent increase in freight rates.
The shipping line has doubled its vessel capacity from 280,000 TEU to 560,000 TEU over the last 12 months, placing it in seventh place in the global rankings, up from 16th last year, reports Alphaliner. CSAV has also doubled its market share in 18 months and will enter the top five container lines if it expands at its present rate.
In the same quarter last year, the Chilean carrier had posted a net loss of $147 million. Net profit for the first nine months of this year reached hit $180 million against a $550 million loss last year with last year's full year loss totalling $656 million.
But company warned that fourth quarter volume will be lower and growth slower than experienced in the third quarter.
Said CSAV: "It is possible to expect that the [quarterly] volume will not grow at the same pace of the previous one, or may even show some decrease compared to recent months. This will likely result in lower prices and reduced margins for the fourth quarter when compared to the previous quarter."
CSAV plans to re-enter the West Africa trades in December as it continues to further penetrate markets where it only had limited presence.
Paris-based Alphaliner attributes CSAV's success mainly to the change in the carrier's trade mix as its recent expansion has focused on the Far East-Latin America and Far East-US trades, where average freight rates are higher, according to the Shipping Gazette.