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CMA CGM’s revenue and earnings shrink after last record year

French ocean carrier CMA CGM saw its revenue, earnings and profits plunge in the first quarter of the year, compared with the same period in 2022.

In particular, the company's revenue reached US$12.7 billion, down 30.2%, earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) decreased by 61.3% to US$3.4 billion and net income fell from US$7.2 billion in 2022 first quarter to US$2 billion in the first three months of the current year.

Although the numbers are at significantly lower levels than in the previous year, CMA CGM noted that the financial results of the next three quarters of the year are expected to be even weaker. "In this environment, the first quarter is expected to be the best quarter of the year as the Group's financial results continue to return to normal," confirmed the Marseille-based company in a statement.

"The fourth-quarter of 2022’s trends remained in play in the first-quarter of 2023, with challenging market conditions in the transport and logistics industry, while freight demand continued to slow, spurring a rapid normalisation of spot freight rates," added CMA CGM.

Meanwhile, the third-largest container carrier in the world moved 5 million TEUs in the first quarter of the year, translating to a year-on-year decline of 5.3%.

The ocean carrier pointed out that "second-half 2022 trends continued to prevail in 2023, with deteriorated conditions in the transport and logistics industry", while macroeconomic forecasts for 2023 anticipate moderate global GDP growth over the year, in light of inflationary pressure which is dragging down consumer spending in OECD countries.

However, this may stabilise later in the year, according to CMA CGM, which said that "new capacity delivered over the coming quarters is expected to continue weighing on freight rates in container shipping."

Rodolphe Saadé, chairman and CEO of the CMA CGM Group, commented, "After two exceptional years, our industry has entered a phase of normalisation due to the slowdown in global growth, inflation and a destocking phenomenon that is continuing in many parts of the world."

He went on to highlight, "Despite this deteriorated context, our first-quarter results are extremely solid. They are the fruit of our investments - more than US$30 billion committed over the past two years - which enable us to constantly broaden and strengthen our range of transport and logistics solutions for our customers."

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