By NEIL HARTNELL
Tribune Business Editor
Nassau’s main commercial shipping port yesterday revealed it beat its full-year profits target for 2023 by some 17.7 percent or more than $1.4m compared to original forecasts.
Arawak Port Development Company (APD), the BISX-listed owner and operator of Nassau Container Port, revealed in its audited financial statements that net and comprehensive income for the 12 months to end-June 2023 stood at $9.687m compared to budget projections of $8.226m.
The company, in which both the Government and shipping industry have matching 40 percent equity ownership stakes, generated a 30.6 percent year-over-year net income increase with the bottom line expanding by more than $2.5m compared to the prior year’s figures.
APD’s net income rise was largely driven by total revenues, which also beat budget forecasts by 17 percent, jumping from a projected $30.619m when the company’s 2022 annual report was unveiled last November to $35.838m - a figure more than $5m ahead of target.
On a year-over-year basis, total revenues rose by 19.6 percent or almost $6m compared to the $29.96m produced for the 12 months to end-June 2022. APD is likely to have benefited from the economy’s continued post-COVID reflation, as well as ongoing import volumes related to construction projects such as the US embassy and Nassau Cruise Port during the last financial year.
Total expenses, meanwhile, rose by 15.4 percent year-over-year to reach $17.161m compared to $14.867m - a rate of increase that was below revenue growth. APD has also unveiled tariff increases for clients needing to use a second crane, which are set to take effect on December 1, 2023, and more than double the existing rate for the first two hours from $800 to $2,000.
Thereafter, the rate will be $1,000 per hour or $250 for every 15 minutes. Second crane overtime charges will jump from $450 per hour to $750 per hour, a 66.7 percent increase, with the overtime rate for Sundays and public holidays doubling from $500 per hour to $1,000 per hour.
“In an effort to continue to meet customer demand and address cost increases, the Nassau Container Port announces a general tariff rate increase with an effective date of December 1, 2023,” APD said in a notice. “The awarding of a second crane would be at the sole discretion of APD Management and is not automatic.
“An estimated 90 percent of imported containers will not be affected by the tariff increases described above. This is an optional service extended to carriers, is not a mandatory service and does not directly influence the cost of importing cargo into New Providence.”
APD, in its initial forecasts for the now-closed 2023 financial year, said: “For the 2023 fiscal year, we are budgeting gross revenue of $30.619m or 2.2 percent more than the prior year’s actual gross revenue.” Full-year revenues for 2022 came in at $29.96m, meaning the company had forecast just a $623,000 year-over-year top-line increase, although the impact on profits was projected to be much more.
“Net income is projected to be approximately $8.226m or approximately $808,000 more than the 2022 actual net income of $7.418m,” the BISX-listed port operator revealed. “Our net income is currently 56 percent or $1.197m over budget as of September 30, 2022. This is attributable to the increase in storage fees, and TEU and vehicle volumes, being over budget.
“Ongoing projects currently include Global Port Holdings (Nassau Cruise Port) and downtown redevelopment; the US Embassy; Goldwynn Condo Hotel and Residences; and South Ocean resort. All these projects are in progress. Management remains extremely conservative and does not foresee any significant project volumes during financial year.”
APD added that total TEU container throughput volumes for the 2023 full-year were forecast to be 9,000, or 7 percent higher, than 2022’s 127,000 forecast. Container volumes for the 12 months to end-June 2022 came in slightly above forecast at 128,995, which also represented an 8 percent jump over 2021’s 118,962 TEUs.
“Nassau Container Port’s TEU volumes as of September 30, 2022, are tracking 3.94 percent over budget. Total revenues as of September 30, 2022, are tracking about 23 percent over budget,” APDs 2022 annual report revealed. “Total market volumes are estimated to be around 136,000 TEUs for 2023 or 9,000 TEU above the 2022 budgeted volumes of 127,000 TEUs.
“Our total revenues as of September 30, 2022, are over budget by approximately $1.728m or 23 percent. Total expenses as of September 30, 2022, were over budget by $665,625 driven mainly by increase in terminal handling fees related to import volumes and storage.”