The loss reported by the French line compared to a $400m profit in the in the first quarter of 2015. Revenues fell by 15.3% to $3.4bn in Q1 2016 from $4bn in the same period a year earlier.
Volumes were up 2.9% in the quarter at 3.2m teu, however, rates fell an average of 17.6% per teu.
“In a very difficult environment, we have in the first quarter recorded an increase in volumes above the market average, while maintaining a positive core EBIT margin,” said Rodolphe Saadé, vice chairman of CMA CGM. The company reported a core EBIT of $3m for the first quarter.
“We will continue our strict financial discipline, including the implementation of a significant cost reduction plan. In addition, we are moving forward on our strategic projects, namely the proposed acquisition of NOL (Neptune Orient Lines) and the creation of a new operational alliance Ocean with a launching anticipated in April 2017”.
The acquisition of NOL has now been approved by the European and Indian authorities and CMA CGM continues to seek other regulatory approvals.
The line is a rolling out a $1bn cost reduction programme over the next 18 months.
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