DEBT-saddled shipping firm Negros Navigation (Nenaco) posted positive revenues for the first two months of the year propelled by the sale of two ageing vessels.
In a report, Nenaco said its net income surged more than four fold to P114.33 million for the first two months of 2007 compared to a P24-million net loss posted in the same period last year.
The positive revenues are not expected to be enough to put Nenaco in the black. It expects a net loss of P33.16 million for January to February 2007.
Revenues from the passage and freight businesses reached P237.86 million for the period from last year’s P281.22 million.
Nenaco sold the 4,494-gross registered ton (GRT) MV Princess of Negros, built in 1972, for about $1 million in January this year. The 5,342-GRT MV St. Exekiel Moreno was sold in December last year for $1.67 million. The two were delivered to their new owners this month.
If not for proceeds from the vessels, the company would have incurred a net loss of P3.8 million for January and February.
Similarly, selling the vessels even much earlier would have added P10 million more to the company’s net income as a result of the lay up cost, which was unbudgeted.
The sale brought down the company’s fuel-to-revenue ration to 36% from 46% last year. “This brings the company closer to its desired fuel to revenue ration and effectively aligning itself with the industry leaders,” the shipping line said in its report.
In January and February, only two of its Ropax (RoRo and passenger vessels) and one cargo vessel were fully operational as two others underwent drydocking.
This year, Nenaco needs to sell MV Mary the Queen of Peace and MV San Lorenzo Ruiz.
Nenaco has benefited from the Philippine Liner and Shipping Association-initiated increase in passage rates from P911 to P1,024 per passenger. It also increased group sales from schools speciali-zing in hotel and restaurant management, maritime, and tourism.
Freight volume for the first two months of the year increased to 8,190 TEUs, 15% higher than the target. “Volume was higher than expected due to the maximization of cargo available bottoms by accepting break-bulk and rolling cargoes, thereby offsetting the negative effect on lower average rate per TEU and the reduction of the number of trips,” the company explained.