August 9 - Wilh. Wilhelmsen Holding ASA (WWH) has issued its results for the second quarter of 2013.

Operating profit for the second quarter totalled USD 106 million based on a total income of USD 903 million.

Compared with the previous quarter, the operating profit was up 37 percent while the revenue increased 4 percent.

The figures were down 23 percent and 7 percent respectively, when comparing with a historically strong period in the
shipping segment in the second quarter of 2012.

"We have seen higher activity levels in our main business segments. The major driver is a 13 percent increase in volumes transported deep sea," said Thomas Wilhelmsen, group ceo, WWH. "Combined with a sound development in the cargo and trade mix and gains from operational efficiency initiatives, Wilh. Wilhelmsen ASA's total income and operating profit improved by 6 percent and 22 percent respectively quarter on quarter."

Commenting on an increase in operating profit for the group's maritime services segment: "The income from our maritime services activities was stable quarter on quarter and up 37 percent in earnings lifted by a substantially stronger margin for ships services.

"The technical solutions area continued to grow with increased order intake, while ship management had a slight reduction in vessels on full technical management."

The group's holding and investment portfolio developed positively, the main driver being an increased contribution from its investment in NorSea Group.

"We anticipate that volumes to be shipped by WWASA will remain at present level in the second half of the year. We will therefore continue to actively optimise and adjust tonnage to market demand" said Wilhelmsen.

"A generally weak shipping market impacts owners' purchasing capabilities and put pressure on demand and operating margin, especially in the maritime services segment. The gradual increase in newbuild ordering activity and the global merchant fleet is, however, expected to continue to drive demand for maritime services," he added.