Gauteng Business News

Send  Share  RSS  Twitter  26 Aug 2010

Grindrod Has a Tougher Year: Grindrod Has a Tougher Year


Recent Gauteng Business News

Grindrod Limited, the shipping and logistics business listed in the transport sector of the JSE securities exchange, today announced its interim results. Grindrod reported earnings of R435,5 million and headline earnings of 95,4 cents per share for the 6 months ended 30 June 2010. The stronger Rand/US Dollar exchange rate and the fact that there were no ship sale profits this year (ship sale profits R152 million in the same period last year) resulted in earnings and headline earnings declining by 10% compared to the corresponding period in 2009. Despite the decline in earnings, the return on ordinary shareholder funds was in excess of 16% annualised.

Highlights of the last 6 months:
• The Shipping Division took delivery of 4 vessels and exercised an option to purchase a chartered vessel.
• Grindrod announced in May this year that the Shipping division had concluded the acquisition of Associated Bunker Oil Contractors (ABC), a Rotterdam-based bunker tanker business. The ABC group operates 4 bunker tankers delivering marine fuels to ships in the ports of Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Antwerp (ARA). The acquisition of ABC in Europe expands the bunker barge business in South Africa and supports Grindrod’s strategy of expansion into international and niche market sectors.
• The Trading division has seen an increase in volumes and has focused on developing the Asian market trade.
• The Trading division over the last 6 months have been working on the development of physical supply opportunities in the marine fuels sector. In particular, Cockett Marine Oil, a 100 % owned subsidiary of Grindrod, has worked closely with the Port of London Authority to develop a bunkers-only service for shipping operators transiting the English Channel. The new service will be operated from three anchorages in the Thames Estuary and will commence in September 2010. This service will take advantage of being closer to the traffic separation schemes in the English Channel and require a diversion of only 1-2 hours from the shipping lanes, in contrast to the diversions required to reach other bunkering facilities in the English Channel.
• The Maputo Port Development Company (MPDC) in which Grindrod has a 24,7% shareholding, has recently negotiated the extension of the concession to 2033 with an option to extend the concession term for a further 10 years. Maputo is seen as a key strategic port, positioned close to Mpumalanga, Gauteng and Limpopo and is ideally situated to supplement capacity in the South African ports. The extension of the concession term will allow for the implementation of the port master plan and for the development of the port to its potential.
• Further to the above, the extension of Grindrod’s Maputo Coal Terminal sub-concession to 2043 was concluded, together with an agreement to expand the Maputo Coal Terminal to an annual capacity of 16 to 25 million tonnes.

• Grindrod’s Freight Services Division concluded the acquisition of Fuelogic, a bulk liquid transporter operating in Southern Africa. This business has long term contracts delivering volumes of approximately 2.4 billion litres per annum.

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