The duisport Group proves to be crisis-proof and invests massively in the location

Dr. Carsten Hinne, Markus Bangen (CEO), Lars Nennhaus. Copyright duisport

The duisport Group again defied all crises last year and is drawing up a positive balance sheet for 2022. The past financial year was characterized by the Ukraine war and its consequences, such as high inflation and sharply increased energy prices, as well as by disrupted supply chains, low water in the summer, and the effects of the Corona pandemic. Although overall performance and cargo throughput declined slightly, operating profit actually increased compared with the previous year.

“Fortunately, the economic effects of the Ukraine war were not as severe for the duisport Group as we initially feared. On the other hand, we felt the consequences of the low water level in the summer and the decline in German chemical production all the more. Despite the massive impairments and challenges, however, our core business has proven to be extremely stable and resilient,” summarizes CEO Markus Bangen.

The most important figures at a glance

The total operating performance of the duisport Group in 2022 was 332.7 million euros despite the tense market environment. Adjusted for the effect of a non-recurring gain in the previous year, operating profit actually increased. In 2021, the total operating performance of €346.8 million was significantly influenced by the sale of a logistics hall for around €18 million.

“The fact that we have managed to grow in our operating business despite all the crises is outstanding,” says Markus Bangen. “My great thanks go to all our employees for their tireless efforts in this difficult year.”

EBITDA amounted to 42 million euros and EBIT to 22.2 million euros. Both figures – minus the special effect – are thus again at the level of the previous years. Total assets of the duisport Group increased from 438.7 million Euros to 454.7 million Euros (+3.6 percent) compared to the previous year due to investments and the expansion of business operations.

In the Infrastructure and Suprastructure business segment, the duisport Group achieved total operating performance of €60.2 million, 8.2 percent above the level of the previous year (2021: €55.6 million). The new investments initiated both in infrastructure and in further terminal and warehouse capacities will also ensure further growth here in the future, in particular also through restructuring and new uses in the existing port areas.

In the Logistics Services business segment, total operating performance fell by 22.9 percent to €90.0 million in 2022 (2021: €116.7 million). The main reason for this is the deliberate reduction in the project business of duisport consult GmbH.

The Packaging Logistics segment achieved total operating revenue of €105.8 million in 2022, following revenue of €94.6 million in the previous year (+11.8 percent). This exceeded the pre-Corona level of 102.0 million euros from 2019.

The Contract Logistics segment generated total operating performance of 32.6 million euros. This corresponds to an increase of 10.5 percent compared to the previous year (2021: 29.5 million euros).

Container throughput fell slightly to around 4.0 million TEU in the 2022 financial year (2021: 4.3 million TEU; -7 percent). Overall, the duisport Group handled 54.9 million tons (2021: 58.2 million tons) of goods by ship, rail, and truck last year. Total throughput in all Duisburg ports (including private works ports) also fell slightly in 2022 to a total of 104.9 million metric tons (2021: 111.1 million metric tons; -5.7 percent).

In the past financial year, despite the critical availability of materials and suppliers and the sharp rise in purchasing prices, the duisport Group spent around €55.0 million on investments in property, plant and equipment, financial investments and maintenance measures in order to further strengthen the infra- and superstructure of the Port of Duisburg and thus the Duisburg location.

Focus 2023: Investments in the Duisburg hub

Massive investments in the Port of Duisburg as a location, further development into a central hub for sustainable energy products, and the expansion of the international duisport network are at the top of the agenda in the current financial year.

“This year alone, we will invest around 100 million euros in the port infrastructure, i.e. roads, bridges, tracks and port facilities, in order to maintain and expand the performance of Central Europe’s largest logistics hub,” explains Lars Nennhaus, who has been duisport’s Executive Board member responsible for Technology and Operations since January 1 of this year. “Modernizing and expanding the infrastructure on site is our top priority,” says Nennhaus.

In the area of rail infrastructure, the focus is on the reconstruction of the Walsum siding to connect logport VI and the modernization and expansion of the existing track systems. For example, logport I will receive an additional exit track spanned by contact wire for 740-meter-long trains and an expansion of the entry tracks.

In the area of port infrastructure, in addition to the expansion and reconstruction of internal terminal roads, the focus is on the replacement and new construction of handling embankments and the start of the second construction phase of the Hamborn/Walsum south-west link road to connect logport VI to the supraregional road network.

One of the most important future projects in the Port of Duisburg is taking shape in parallel: The construction of the Duisburg Gateway Terminal (DGT) on the former coal island is right on schedule. The bridge to the neighboring port area in Duisburg-Ruhrort is expected to be completed this summer. At the beginning of the second quarter of 2024, the largest container terminal in the European hinterland, which will be operated on a completely climate-neutral basis, is scheduled to go into operation.

Diversify international network more strongly

The construction of the “Railport” intermodal terminal in Kartepe near Istanbul, which duisport is building together with the Turkish Arkas Holding, is also on schedule. Completion of the first construction phase is expected in mid-2024. This will strengthen the duisport Group’s presence in the Mediterranean region – comparable to its investment in the Port of Trieste – and will benefit from future flows of goods in Central Europe through the establishment and marketing of reliable logistics chains. “In addition to the existing connection to the western ports, fast and secure connections to the ports in the Mediterranean will play an increasingly important role,” says Dr. Carsten Hinne, duisport board member responsible for the international network.

In 2022, the duisport Group held investments in various operating companies abroad, including in the Netherlands, Belgium, France, Italy, Poland, Turkey, India, China, and Singapore. “We will continue to develop the Duisburg logistics hub and further diversify our activities not only in Asia but also in Europe,” explains CEO Markus Bangen.

Central goal: Strengthen competition and business location

The strategic shareholdings and cooperative ventures with partners in Germany and abroad pay off for duisport’s long-term goals, as do the investments in infrastructure. Markus Bangen: “A future-proof infrastructure, stable logistics chains, and the linking of logistics services create the ideal conditions for the indispensable competitive diversity within the energy and logistics hub of the Port of Duisburg. In this way, we are making an important contribution to sustainably strengthening Duisburg, North Rhine-Westphalia and Germany as business locations.”