An extensive review of the activities of ThPA SA during the first year of the new management, as well as the next steps for strategic development, were presented by the executives of ThPA SA, at a Press Conference, which was held on Wednesday 19 June at the facilities of the Port of Thessaloniki.
The Chairman of the BoD & CEO of ThPA SA, Mr. Sotirios Theofanis, during his introductory presentation, referred to the strategic vision of the current management team that has been a driving force during all these months and clearly mentioned the achievement of the goals of the initial period.
Then, the Chief Financial Officer of the company, Mr. Henrik Μ. Jepsen, took the floor and presented the financial data for 2018. Mr. Jepsen highlighted, inter alia, that: “Our company's financial data clearly reflect the increase in throughput at the Container Terminal by 6%, the Conventional Cargo by 4%, as well as the significant improvement in the efficiency of the company's facilities and equipment”.
Financial data for 2018
The approach of the current management team has been based on the development of a customer-centric mindset, the modernization of cargo handling equipment and the administrative reorganization of the company. The strategy that was chosen is deemed successful as, according to the financial data of ThPA SA for 2018, there was a significantly improved profitability:
- The Company's turnover increased by 7.9% (€ 58.5 million in 2018 compared to 54.2 million in 2017);
- Operating profit, EBITDA (Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization) increased by 46.4% to € 27.6 million in 2018, compared to € 18.85 million in 2017, with the related margin on turnover being 47.2%;
- Profits before tax recorded a significant increase of 98.2%, as they reached € 24.7 million in 2018, versus € 12.5 million in 2017, with a related margin on turnover of 42%;
- Profits after tax were more than doubled and increased by more than 136.8% to € 17.15 million in 2018, compared to € 7.2 million in 2017, with the related margin on turnover being 29.3%;
- Revenue per operational segment amounted to € 37.9 million for the Container Terminal (C.T.), € 18.9 million for the Conventional Cargo Terminal, € 223 thousand for the Passenger Terminal and € 1.49 million for the Exploitation of Spaces, the latter corresponding to 2.5% of the turnover.
- ThPA SA continues to have zero borrowing, supported on a very strong cash basis, with cash and cash equivalents on 31 December 2018 exceeding € 91 million.
- The proposed dividend for 2018 is € 0.57 per share, to be approved by the Annual Ordinary General Meeting.
The Deputy CEO & Chief Commercial Officer of ThPA SA, Mr. Rui Pinto, during his presentation, mentioned the following: “Our company continues to implement its investment program by having a plan and being consistent in its implementation, aspiring to realize its strategic goal. This goal is to make the Port of Thessaloniki a top port in terms of both service and technological equipment”, also noting that the preliminary throughput data of the first quarter of 2019 show that the increase in throughput volumes follows the positive trend of 2018.
Commercial activity for 2018
According to the data presented, the increase in throughput at the Container Terminal is due to the increase in Greek exports and the significant presence of the company in the "transit" markets of Bulgaria, the Republic of North Macedonia and Serbia. Equally important is the presence on the "transit" market of the Republic of North Macedonia when it comes to conventional cargo, while ThPA SA has also expanded into new markets such as Kosovo.
The executives of the management team are fully satisfied with the improvement in Port efficiency indicators, such as vessel waiting time at anchor and crane productivity (number of moves per crane/hour).
In addition to the increase in throughput at the Port of Thessaloniki, there is a weekly Ro-Ro service linking Thessaloniki with the ports of Limassol and Haifa.
The investment plan of ThPA SA
In the first 14 months, the current management team, in line with the strategic choice of shareholders for immediate replacement of the company's equipment and improvement of the services provided, has completed the following investments:
- Purchase of 12 new Straddle Carriers. Fleet of 24 units today available;
- Purchase of 3 spreaders for STS and 2 for MHC already in operation;
- Comprehensive refurbishment program of STS & SCs already completed, leading to improved equipment availability;
- Extension of stacking yard by 2.5Ha;
- Extension of reefer capacity, from 300 to 400 plugs;
- Re-pavement of yard areas inside Container Terminal;
- Installation of new lighting system at the Container Terminal;
- Enlargement of road leading to Gate 16, from 3 to 6 lanes;
- Creation of Pre-Port Parking area near Gate 16 for parking of trucks that need to perform customs clearance.
According to the investment plan of ThPA SA, the amount of investments in the first 33 months after the take-over by the new management is estimated to reach 50 million euros.
In this context, the following investments are expected to be completed by the end of 2020:
- Purchase of two new Gantry Cranes, twin-lift, 18 rows (able to operate vessels up to 9.000 TEUs capacity). Expected delivery by early 2021.
- Purchase of new Mobile Harbour crane, to be delivered by the end of 2019 with lifting capacity of 140tons. To be used for the handling of containers and conventional cargo;
- Tender & award of new TOS software for the management of container terminal operations.
Then, Mr. Sotirios Theofanis, during his basic presentation, outlined the next steps of the company's strategy and the upcoming development challenges. Specifically, he mentioned the following: “As the company has gathered momentum, it has regained the trust of the Port’s customers, as well as most of its clientele and is now ready for the next step: To make the Port of Thessaloniki an international transport hub for Southeastern Europe and the Balkans, contributing decisively to the development of the economy of Thessaloniki and the wider region” and he added: “By building on the synergies that have been developed over the past few years in the neighboring Balkan countries, ThPA SA will focus on working with existing dry ports or creating new ones, consolidating the leading role of the port in Southeastern Europe, while enhancing the commercial and business value of the Port, not only for the majority shareholders, but also for the entire business community involved in business activities directly or indirectly connected to the port”.
In the context of presentation of the strategy of ThPA SA, Mr. Theofanis announced that Mr. Franco Cupolo undertakes the position of Chief Executive Officer with duties related to the operations of ThPA SA, while Mr. Theofanis, as the Chairman of the BoD & Managing Director, maintain the duties for the sectors related to the strategy, growth, commercial policy and investment plan, including related activities in the Balkans and Southeastern Europe.
Mr. Franco Cupolo said that he is particularly happy for his new duties at the port of Thessaloniki and that his main priority is to get in touch with and work with the employees of ThPA SA, as the human capital is the most important asset of any company. "The success of a company can only be based on the success of its people," he said. With regard to the management model that he is about to implement, he mentioned that it relies on three main principles:
- safety, as the safety of both workers and transactors is of vital importance in the port industry;
- honesty that leads to transparency;
- a spirit of cooperation;
In the following link you will find relevant photographic material: