August 14 - Royal Boskalis Westminster nv has posted a net profit of EUR253 million (USD338.4 million) for the first half of 2014, compared with the EUR123 million (USD164.8 million) in the first half of 2013.

Revenue rose 21 percent in the first half of the year to EUR1.5 billion (USD2.008 billion), while EBITDA amounted to EUR466 million (USD624.4 million) in the first six months of the year, compared with EUR280 million (USD374.5 million) in the same period of 2013.

Boskalis said that the results in all three of its business segments rose sharply compared with the first half of 2013. The company added that Dockwise contributed an extra quarter to earnings compared with 2013, in addition to a sizeable contribution from cancellation and rescheduling fees.

The order book stood at EUR3.146 billion (USD4.26 billion) at the end of the first half of the year, down slightly from 2013, which stood at EUR3.323 billion (USD4.456 billion).

Peter Berdowski, Boskalis ceo, said that the high result was partly thanks to the company's strategic choice to broaden its focus on the offshore sector.

"The offshore activities are becoming increasingly important and the contribution of Dockwise forms a key part of this. But the traditional core dredging activities also made an excellent contribution to the results," said Berdowski.

He added, however, that "the extremely good results may not be viewed as a fair reflection of current market conditions which remain very challenging, both in terms of margin and volume."

Boskalis said that its growth opportunities lie mainly in the transport, logistics and installation field of the offshore sector.

The company added that the market picture is not expected to change significantly in the second half of the year, compared with the first.

Assuming the positive settlement of several old projects in 2014, Boskalis' board of management expects that, barring unforeseen circumstances, net profit for the 2014 financial year will exceed its record profit of EUR366 million (USD490 million) achieved in 2013.