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Ocean Wilsons’ chairwoman sees choppy waters ahead

Caroline Foulger, chairwoman of Ocean Wilsons Holdings Limited (File photograph)

Ocean Wilsons Holdings Ltd has reported a profit after tax of $11.5 million for fiscal year 2022.

Releasing its annual report to the market, the company said that compares with a profit after tax of $82.5 million in 2021.

Ocean Wilsons is a Bermudian investment holding company that, through its subsidiaries, holds a portfolio of international investments and operates a maritime services company in Brazil.

The company is listed on the Bermuda Stock Exchange and the London Stock Exchange.

Operating profit was $112.1 million, up 15.6 per cent on 2021’s figure of $97 million.

Revenue was up 11 per cent year-over-year, from $396.4 million in 2021 to $440.1 million.

Ocean Wilsons’ investment portfolio had a negative net return of $51 million, which compares with a positive net return of $44.5 million in 2021.

Investment portfolio assets at year-end were $293.8 million, down from $351.8 million at the prior year-end.

Net assets were down 3.8 per cent at $754.1 million.

Net debt at year-end was $442.3 million, up from $440.9 million.

Net cash inflow from operating activities was $97.1 million, down 8.5 per cent from 2021 ($106.1 million).

Caroline Foulger, chairwoman of Ocean Wilsons, said: “I am delighted to report that, in spite of a challenging 2022, the business has navigated the year with confidence and delivered both strong operational results and investment returns that are respectable compared to benchmarks.

“Elevated risks and uncertainties with respect to the supply-chain challenges and the impacts of the sanctions on shipping markets, coupled with inflation and the effects of the fears of recession on global financial markets, all had a dampening effect.

“Notwithstanding these headwinds, the group performed particularly well in our maritime operations, and our defensive positions minimised losses in the investment portfolio against index comparatives.”

She added: “The first quarter of 2023, in terms of uncertainty, is reminiscent of the first quarter of 2022, which saw the Russian invasion of Ukraine and a commensurate change in the prevailing world order regarding supply chains, food security and armed conflict; 2023 has already been jolted by the effect on the US and global banking sectors from the demise of Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank and the current uncertainty around Credit Suisse and possibly others.

“There is much debate as to the midterm impact of this on financial markets, but what is clear is that there continues to be little expectation of predictability.”

Looking ahead, she said: “There are choppy waters ahead in the global economy. However, the experience of 2022 has demonstrated that there are always navigation opportunities to be found and the board believes that both our divisions are well placed to seek them out.”

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Published May 03, 2023 at 7:37 am (Updated May 03, 2023 at 7:37 am)

Ocean Wilsons’ chairwoman sees choppy waters ahead

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