PARIS (dpa-AFX) - France's Channel Tunnel operator Groupe Eurotunnel SA (GETS.L) on Monday reported a higher profit for its first half driven by increased revenues in its shuttle services and Europorte, despite a slight decline in railway network. At constant exchange rate, net profit remained stable with last year. The company's shares dropped about 6 percent in Paris.
Eurotunnel said it has prepared for the Olympic Games with the addition of an extra half Shuttle, to transport passenger vehicles through the Channel Tunnel and expects a jump in traffic between the Continent and the UK. However, the company noted that the economic crisis, and in particular the crisis in public finances in some eurozone countries, make it difficult to assess the economic outlook.
The company has reported a 14 percent rise in revenues to 472.93 million euros in the recent half year.
In cross-Channel Fixed Link segment, revenues in the first half increased 10 percent, including an 18 percent rise in Shuttle services revenues. Traffic growth in Truck Shuttles grew 20 percent from a year earlier. In Passenger Shuttles, cars were up 4 percent and coaches traffic improved 6 percent. Europorte segment continued its growth in revenues with a 36 percent increase, the company said.
Meanwhile, Railway network revenues declined 1 percent from last year. The company has restated its prior-year results.
In the second quarter, total revenues grew 9 percent to 250.4 million euros, despite a decline in railway network.
Jacques Gounon, chairman and chief executive officer of the company said, 'This first half year has been very satisfactory: traffic has continued to grow in a highly competitive market due to a distinct service offering. The financial performance is sound, generating a very good level of cash-flow.'
In the first half, net result- Group share surged to 5.24 million euros from 1.88 million euros in the previous year. On a per share basis, earnings were 0.01 euro.
At constant exchange rate, net profit of 5 million euros remained stable with last year. The prior year results were restated, the company said. On an equivalent basis, excluding insurance indemnities accounted for in 2011, the net result improved by 29 million euros.
In Paris, the shares are currently trading at 5.92 euros, down 0.36 euros or 5.75 percent, on a volume of 1.76 million euros, against a three-month average volume of 908 thousand shares.
Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX