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HAMBURG: March 23, 2016. Hapag-Lloyd has reported a net profit of €114 million on revenue of €8.8 billion for 2015 – a turnaround from a loss of €604 million on revenue of €6.8 billion the previous year.

Reflecting a full year's integration with CSAV's container business, volumes rose 25.3 percent to 7.4 million TEUs, while expenses per TEU fell 20.1 percent US$1,089 as a result of a drop in bunker price from US$575 to $312 per tonne.

Hapag-Lloyd 2016Commenting on the results Hapag-Lloyd CEO Rolf Habben Jansen said: "2015 was a very good year for Hapag-Lloyd. We delivered on what we promised, our business is better positioned than before the CSAV merger, and for the first time since 2010 we have a positive result – and we are very delighted by this."

Habben Jansen said his company wanted to remain a "top five player" in the future and had set some ambitious cost-cutting and revenue improvement targets to ensure this: "We've worked hard for this success by quickly integrating CSAV's container business and by exploiting the synergies, as well as with the OCTAVE cost-cutting and efficiency program, which will make a total earnings contribution of US$600 million [in] 2016."

Noting industry results in the last quarter of 2015 are not sustainable, he said there "needs to be a recovery of the freight rates" which he expects sometime this year as a result of capacity becoming more in line with demand.

Commenting on recent liner consolidations, including his own company, he said it has led to a new mixture of alliances: "It's a good thing. The market needs stability," adding that it would be 2-3 months before the industry would see any "clarity".

Anticipating a modest recovery in the market and a "normal peak season" coupled with the gains from cost reductions and efficiency projects, Hapag-Lloyd expects a "moderate" increase of EBITDA and a "clearly" increasing EBIT in 2016 compared to last year's €831 million and €366 million respectively.

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