Germany’s Ernst Russ Group has bought its second container feeder vessel this year.
The Hamburg-based company has bought a 2,194-teu vessel built in 2017, to be called Frida Russ.
The vessel has been purchased with the balance of a charter of up to 20 months, with an option for a further three months.
“With this investment, the Ernst Russ Group is further expanding its shipping portfolio and contributing to the desired rejuvenation of the group’s own fleet,” the company said.
The purchase comes just two months after the Frankfurt and Hamburg-listed company teamed up with Eimskip of Iceland to purchase the 1,025-teu Bakkafoss (built 2009).
The purchases leave the company with a fleet of 31 vessels.
Most of the fleet is smaller container ships with a capacity of between 700 teu and 6,600 teu.
Ernst Russ, which is 38.2% controlled by the Dohle Group, recently reported a three-fold increase in profits in 2022.
Consolidated net income after non-controlling interests increased to €47.3m ($51m), up from €15.8m.
Revenues more than doubled in 2022 to €191.7m.
Ebit tripled to €90.1m last year, up from €30.8m in 2021, and liquidity increased to €57.8m despite the extensive repayment of ship mortgage loans.
The company expects operating earnings (Ebit) to fall by up to 37% this year.
Ebit is projected to fall to between €57m and €77m this financial year, down from €90.1m last year.
However, last year’s operating profit was skewed by the sale of vessels and shares, and the adjusted Ebit in 2022 was only €64m.