SEACOR Reports Improved Inland Income
SEACOR Holdings Inc. announced October 23 its third quarter earnings, which saw an increase in operating income in its inland and ocean transportation and logistics businesses. The operating income for the company’s inland transportation and logistics services was $4.3 million compared with $2.1 million in the preceding quarter.
“Our SEA-Vista tanker fleet benefited from not having any drydocking expenses during the quarter and more available revenue days, and our chemical ATB was able to find employment in what was a weak spot market for product movement,” said Charles Fabrikant, executive chairman and CEO. “Inland rates improved in part due to harvest activity and export demand and also due to continued demand for coal exports and frac sand moving to the Permian from the Mid and Upper Mississippi River origin. Barge rates are variable and the self-imposed Chinese embargo of American origin soybeans creates uncertainty for next year.”
Improved barge pool results were partially offset by lower results in the company’s terminal and fleeting operations as a consequence of seasonal slowdowns.
Operating results for SCF Bunge Marine, the company’s joint venture that operates towboats on the inland waterways, decreased primarily due to out-of-service time for the engine overhaul of one towboat. Operating results for Bunge-SCF Grain, the company’s joint venture that operates grain elevators in Illinois, decreased primarily due to reduced throughput of soybeans due to weak prices and tariff concerns, SEACOR said.
SEACOR’s subsidiary Witt O’Brien’s saw an operating income of $6.1 million compared with $7.3 million in the preceding quarter. The company said that it is certain recovery projects in Texas and Florida following the hurricanes of 2017 wrapped up or began to wind down in the third quarter. However, the SEACOR said it continues to experience strong revenue growth in both its public and private sector services and continues to support the recovery efforts in the U.S. Virgin Islands.
“Witt O’Brien’s had a strong quarter and continued success in expanding its business,” Fabrikant said. “It continues to lead the U.S. Virgin Islands’ recovery from last year’s storms and has also supported similar recovery efforts across communities in Texas, Florida and now Puerto Rico. Following hurricanes Florence and Michael, Witt O’Brien’s has been activated in North Carolina, South Carolina and Florida. Furthermore, its private sector activity continues to grow.”