AD Ports Group announced its financial results for the first half of the year ended 30 June 2021, reporting revenue increase of 21% year-on-year to AED 1,832 million (USD 499 million) compared with AED 1,517 million (USD 413 million) in the first half of 2020, driven by organic growth, diversification into new businesses, new leases and partnerships.
EBITDA rose 8% year-on-year to AED 770 million (USD 210 million), up from AED 714 million (USD 195 million) in the first half of 2020, with growth across most of the business clusters.
Captain Mohamed Juma Al Shamsi, Group CEO, AD Ports Group, said: “Our results demonstrate our resilience and the robust growth we have achieved across our business in line with our strategy. We are committed to driving development and diversification to Abu Dhabi and the UAE’s economy. Our financial performance is underpinned by continued expansions and increased activity, with key partnerships and joint ventures being established that are expected to deliver reliable returns in the future.”
“We are focused on growing our customer base across all of our business clusters. A significant part of our business is based on long-term contracts that provide reliable and stable revenues.”
The underlying business witnessed cargo volumes growing from 15 million metric tonnes in H1 2020 to 25 million metric tonnes in H1 2021, while container throughput grew from 1.57 million TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units) to 1.59 million TEUs during the same period. The industrial zones leased about 2.4 million sq. metres of land during H1 2021.
From a capital-raising standpoint, AD Ports Group successfully issued a AED 3.67 billion (USD 1 billion rated A+ by Fitch and S&P, respectively) bond dually listed on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) and Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX) in May 2021, achieving the lowest coupon rate for an Abu Dhabi government-related entity at the time.
Operational highlights to date in 2021 include the formal inauguration of the expanded container terminal at Fujairah Port in June 2021.
Martin Aarup, Group Chief Financial Officer, AD Ports Group, said: “Our business model is based on long-term contracts with predictable cash flows, enabling us to plan and invest effectively. Coming out of the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, we are focusing on delivering solid returns and managing our capital effectively. Our invested capital increased from AED 19.4 billion (USD 5.3 billion) in 2020 to AED 22.4 billion (USD 6.1 billion) in 2021 in line with our ongoing expansion program.”
The Group reported a slight decline in return on invested capital (ROIC) to 5.04%, which was mainly due to increase in invested capital across the portfolio, especially in the ports and industrial zone businesses, which are expected to yield incremental returns going forward.