Home » AD Ports Group’s 2022 financial results reveal 41% revenue growth to AED 5.5 bn

AD Ports Group’s 2022 financial results reveal 41% revenue growth to AED 5.5 bn

by Dubaiforum

ABU DHABI, 15th February, 2023 (WAM) — AD Ports Group on Wednesday announced its financial results for the 12 months ended December 31, 2022, reporting strong operational and financial performance, with revenue growth of 41 percent year-on-year (YoY) to AED5.5 billion (+23 percent year-on-year to AED4.8 billion organically).

The Group’s strong results were driven by the performance of its Maritime and Ports Clusters as well as acquisitions and new partnerships.

EBITDA (Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation) increased to AED2.2 billion in 2022, +37 percent YoY (+24 percent YoY to AED546 million in Q4 2022). Organically, EBITDA grew by 27 percent YoY to AED2 billion. EBITDA margin stood at 39.8 percent in 2022 (31 percent in Q4 2022).

Total Net Profit reached AED1.3 billion in 2022, +53 percent YoY (+42 percent YoY to AED365 million in Q4 2022). Earnings per share (EPS) increased to AED0.26 for the full year in 2022, up from AED0.22 in 2021.

Operating cash flow amounted to AED1.6 billion in 2022, implying a cash conversion of 74 percent. AED5.6 billion was spent on organic growth-oriented capital expenditure (CapEx) in 2022, as the Group continued to press ahead with its organic capital investment plans.

Free cash flow remained negative at AED4.5 billion due to the front-loaded nature of the ongoing CapEx programme, but also due to acquisitions / investments.

Operationally, in the Ports Cluster, container throughput grew to 4.33 million TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units) in 2022, +28 percent year-on-year (+27 percent year-on-year to 1.17 million TEUs in Q4 2022) as utilisation of the two existing container terminals continued to improve (51 percent in 2022 vs. 40 percent in 2021 and 55 percent in Q4 2022 vs. 43 percent in Q4 2021).

On a like-for-like (LFL) basis, general cargo volumes increased by 3 percent to reach 31.7 million tonnes in 2022, compared with 44.6 million tonnes in 2021, which included a one-off sand supply project of 14.7 million tonnes.

Ro-Ro (Roll-on/roll-off) and Cruise Passenger volumes also rebounded strongly on the back of the abated effect of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In the Economic Cities & Free Zones (EC&FZ) Cluster, 4.2 sq km of new leases (net) were signed in 2022.

In the Maritime Cluster, all operational indicators – vessel fleet, port calls, container feedering volumes, transhipment volumes, marine services activities – recorded strong growth.

In the Logistics Cluster, the key highlight in Q4 2022 was the acquisition announcement of 100 percent ownership of Noatum, a logistics services provider with presence in 26 countries across five continents, for an Enterprise Value of €660 million. The value and earnings accretive acquisition, will, upon completion, significantly broaden AD Ports Group’s global footprint and position it among the leading logistics and freight forwarding companies in the world.

Another key highlight in Q4 2022 was the acquisition announcement of an 80 percent equity stake in Dubai-based Global Feeder Shipping (GFS), a global container shipping company, for an Enterprise Value of AED2.9 billion (US$800 million). GFS is the third largest feeder shipping business globally, operating a comprehensive service network of 20 services across the GCC, Red Sea, Indian Subcontinent and Southeast Asia regions. Upon completion, the acquisition, is set to position AD Ports Group as the largest pure feeder operator in the region and the third largest globally by container capacity, which will be close to 100,000 TEUs.

In September 2022, AD Ports Group also completed the acquisition of a 70 percent stake in International Associated Cargo Carrier (IACC) in Egypt, which fully owns Transmar and TCI, for an Enterprise Value of AED514 million (US$140 million).

In total, the Group inked seven mergers and acquisitions (M&A) transactions in 2022, totalling AED5.9 billion, with GFS, Noatum, and Eskan Al Jamae yet to be completed.

In terms of financial performance, EC&FZ Cluster recorded revenue increase of 6 percent year-on-year to reach AED1,658 million in 2022, benefitting from previously signed land leases, higher utilities revenues, strong momentum in warehouses revenues, as well as positive revenue effect of previous contingent asset related to leases out of Razeen worker residential cities for COVID-19 isolation and quarantine purposes.

Overall revenue for the Ports Cluster grew by 7 percent year-on-year to AED1,135 million, backed by a healthy product mix as well as revenues from the acquisition of TCI, one of the two entities under IACC, Egypt. Double-digit growth in concession fees and leases as well as the strong rebound in the Ro-Ro and Cruise businesses more than offset the decline in General Cargo revenues, which significantly benefited from the sand supply contract in 2021. On a like-for-like (LFL) basis, Ports Cluster revenue grew by 21 percent year-on-year, when adjusted for both the sand supply project and the TCI acquisition.

The transformative impact of the company’s acquisition strategy can be seen most clearly in the exponential increase in the contribution of the Maritime Cluster to the Group’s revenue (the largest revenue contributor with 37 percent of total revenue and second largest EBITDA contributor with 24 percent of total EBITDA). The Maritime Cluster’s revenue growth of 256 percent year-on-year in 2022 to AED2,161 million (+282 percent year-on-year in Q4 2022) was driven by a wider service offering and increased activity in new business segments, including feedering, chartering, transshipment, and offshore services.

The Maritime Cluster added four new companies to its portfolio in 2022: Divetech Marine Engineering Services, Alligator Shipping Container Line, Transmar, one of the two entities part of IACC-Egypt, and SAFEEN Surveys and Subsea Services. These new businesses contributed to revenue and EBITDA with AED689 million and AED150 million in 2022, respectively, and are expected to continue to support the Cluster’s growth going forward.

The Logistics Cluster registered a 12 percent year-on-year revenue decline to AED532 million in 2022 mainly due to the reduction in the vaccine business with the easing of the COVID-19 pandemic, the revision of a contract with a key client from a short-term asset heavy to a longer-term asset light model, as well as temporary lower volumes due to the non-availability of empty containers for exports.

Revenue of the Digital Cluster grew by 11 percent year-on-year to AED400 million in 2022, driven by development progress of various technology-led solutions.

Captain Mohamed Juma Al Shamisi, Managing Director and Group CEO, AD Ports Group, said, “2022 was an exceptional year for AD Ports Group with strong results reflecting the effectiveness of our ambitious growth strategy, and the focus on delivering on our promises to our shareholders and stakeholders, thanks to the continuous support of our wise leadership.

“The Group’s remarkable financial and operational performance was driven by our Maritime and Ports Clusters’ results, coupled with strategic investments, new joint ventures, partnerships and acquisitions that enabled us to expand our geographic footprint, our services and offerings as well as enhance our position as a major player in global trade and logistics. For 2023, we will be focusing on maximising returns and generating portfolio synergies, while providing our customers with superior end to end supply chain outcomes.”

Martin Aarup, Group Chief Financial Officer, AD Ports Group, said, “We are pleased to have achieved an exceptional performance during 2022 by continuing to press ahead with our ambitious organic revenue-generating CapEx programme of around AED15 billion over the next five years, with spending of AED1.4 billion in Q4 2022 and AED5.6 billion for the full year in 2022, and by accelerating the pace of M&A transactions, with seven of them completed or announced last year.

“With a Net Debt to EBITDA ratio of 1.9x at the end of 2022 (compared to 2.3x in 2021), AD Ports Group maintains a solid financial position and robust balance sheet, with significant capital resources still available for both organic and inorganic growth going forward. With the recent M&A transactions announced, we update our medium-term guidance (5Y organic CAGR between 2022 and 2027) to 25-30 percent for revenue and 20-25 percent for EBITDA.”

Ross Thompson, Group Chief Strategy and Growth Officer, AD Ports Group, said, “2022 has been a banner year for AD Ports Group. Despite the global geopolitical and economic headwinds, we continued to build on our foundation in Abu Dhabi by investing in creating assets, routes and expanding our service offerings. At the regional level, our ports and maritime expansion has been asset- and network-led. Our ambitious strategy, not only positioned us for local and regional growth, but also expanded our reach globally with a key focus on our key trading regions, countries, and routes.”

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