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CMA CGM EBITDA down 30% in geopolitical environment impeding fluidity of global trade

The Board of Directors of the CMA CGM Group, a global player in sea, land, air and logistics solutions, under the chairmanship of Rodolphe Saadé, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, met to review the financial statements for the first quarter of 2024. EBITDA is down 30% in a geopolitical environment that is impeding the fluidity of global trade.

The shipping business continues its gradual normalization. The CMA CGM Group strengthens its diversification in logistics with the strategic integration of Bolloré Logistics. The Group commits to customer service quality by renewing OCEAN Alliance and launching SEA REWARD, the first loyalty program for shipping customers.

Saadé, said: "Against a backdrop of industry normalization, our Group has demonstrated its agility and resilience in adapting to new market conditions. Our shipping division turned in a solid performance, buoyed by restocking in China and the United States. As for our logistics business, the acquisition of Bolloré Logistics gives us the critical mass we need to better withstand cyclical changes. In 2024, a year that remains uncertain due to the crisis in the Red Sea, CMA CGM will continue to meet its customers' needs as effectively as possible. We will stay on course with our strategic investments, whether in decarbonization or artificial intelligence."

First-quarter 2024 highlights
During first-quarter 2024, the CMA CGM Group delivered a robust performance. As expected, the start of 2024 proved to be more dynamic for world merchandise trade and demand for cargo shipping, although it was shaped by persistent geopolitical tensions, particularly in the Red Sea region.

These tensions severely impeded the fluidity of global economic trade during the first quarter, causing a fall in effective available capacity in the shipping sector and a rebound in freight rates compared with the final quarter of 2023.

The disruptions are also producing major operational challenges, to which the Group has responded with agility. However, the Group is keeping a close eye on shipping sector fundamentals, in particular the effects of continued new ship deliveries on the balance between supply and demand, which has an impact on freight rates.

The Group is also expanding further in the media sector, and in March signed a promise with the Altice France group in order to acquire the entire share capital of Altice Media.

Following deteriorated market conditions experienced in the fourth-quarter of 2023, the first quarter of 2024 was shaped by a rebound in spot freight rates, mainly due to disruptions in the Red Sea region. The resulting longer journey times via the Cape of Good Hope have weighed on available shipping capacity amid a rebound in demand.

Revenue stood at USD 11.8 billion in the first quarter of 2024, driven mostly by the Group's maritime shipping business. EBITDA totaled USD 2.4 billion, 30.3% lower than in first-quarter 2023. EBITDA margin came in at 20.2%, down 6.8 points.

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