Vopak Ups Outlook as Demand for Energy Storage Boosts Profit
05.20.2024 By Tank Terminals - NEWS

May 20, 2024 [Reuters]- Tank storage company Vopak VOPA.AS on Wednesday raised its full-year profit target, as it beat quarterly earnings expectations on the back of strong demand for energy storage.

 
Disruptions in energy supply chains due to the war in Ukraine have benefited Vopak, as the West invests in import terminals, floating storage and regasification to reduce its reliance on Russian supplies.

The group could now get a similar boost from the war in the Middle East.

“It could be positive, although you don’t want to benefit from a crisis,” Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Michiel Gilsing said on a call.

Supply disruptions mean gas is “coming from larger distances, and that means it’s not flowing via a pipeline, meaning it has to be stored in tanks,” Kepler Cheuvreux analyst Andre Mulder explained.

Vopak now sees earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) of around 970 million euros ($1 billion) in 2023, compared with a previous forecast of more than 950 million.

Its shares were up nearly 4% at 0809 GMT, heading for their best day in about 7 months.

The new guidance factors in the contribution from three chemical terminals in Rotterdam which Vopak is selling, it said in a statement. Gilsing added that sale would “definitely” close in the fourth quarter.

Asked why Vopak is selling chemicals assets rather than oil infrastructure as part of its goal to shift towards greener energy infrastructure, the CFO said: “Oil is effectively still very strong and a growing market.”

Over time, the group will work to re-purpose oil facilities for greener energy, he added.

The company posted EBITDA of 240.5 million euros in the third quarter, exceeding analysts’ average forecast of 238 million.

Vopak also amended its guidance for several other metrics including consolidated growth capital expenditure (CAPEX), now seen at around 275 million euros, compared with around 300 million previously.

 

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