The year 2015 was again a year of improvement for Smyril Line, and a year with increased activity.
The result for 2015 was a profit of DKK 52 million with the progress over the last few year still continuing. The Board of Directors and Management are satisfied with the result. A continuous increase in sales and efficiency of operations is the main reason for the improved result.
2015 was also the year where the company for the first time was able to pay out dividend to our shareholders. Thus DKK 0.26 were paid out for every DKK 1 in share capital.
In general, all the signs have pointed in the right direction: Higher service-level, increased revenue, more passengers, more freight and lower oil prices. Likewise, we are pleased to report that no mishaps of importance have occurred.
We have had an increase in ticket sales of about 9%, of which approx. DKK 5 million are directly related to the solar eclipse. The increase otherwise is a result of increased ticket sales with Norrøna.
As in previous years, Smyril Line experienced growth on the foreign markets in 2015 and the trend seems to continue in 2016. The most important growth during the last years has been on foreign markets. This means that 77% (2014: 73%) of our passenger sales is outside the Faroe Islands. Germany is the biggest single market and stands for about 37% (2014:35%) of the total passenger sales.
The increased number of passengers also resulted in an increased sale on board Norrøna. Our passengers have particularly welcomed the better service and improved offers. Thus, sales per passenger on average increased by 6%.
For financial reasons Smyril Line in 2006 outsourced all freight activities to Blue Water. However, in the fall of 2014 an agreement was reached whereby Smyril Line on 1 January 2015 took over all freight activities in The Faroe Islands and Iceland from Blue Water. Thus, Smyril Line is the only Faroese company to carry freight between the Faroe Islands and foreign countries with the Faroe Islands as the trading centre.
Obviously, this puts great demands on Smyril Line, but as always, our chief consideration is to put the customer's need at the heart of our operations. If we can achieve this, we envisage great expansion possibilities in this business segment.
In 2015, we increased our cargo fleet as we acquired the two ships Hvítanes and Eystnes. Now we have the possibility to transport pelagic fish from the Faroe Islands and Iceland as well as we have an additional arrival and departure to and from the Faroe Islands every week. The cargo ships have been operating since October.
All in all our cargo activities have contributed well to Smyril Line’s operational result.
Stronger Capital Base and Liquidity
In 2015, parts of the company’s loans were refinanced and reconstructed, and long-term debt has now been placed in a secure framework until 2023. With the current levels of operations, we have adequate liquidity and capitalization.
The company's equity was DKK 238 million at year-end 2015. The company has an equity ratio of 39.5% and an interest-bearing debt to earnings before interest, depreciation and amortization of 3.6.