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Currency gains and more earning days boost GC Rieber

Currency gains and more earning days boost GC Rieber
GC Rieber has reported a NOK103.3m ($12.4m) profit for the second quarter, improving on last year's result as more vessels in operation and currency gains boosted income.

Profit in Q2 2014 was NOK43.5m and included a NOK14m loss on currency fluctuations, whereas the most recent quarter's result contains a NOK28.8m gain as the Krone strengthened.

Utilisation of the company's fleet of 11 vessels was 89% for the second quarter, down from 94% in the same period last year; the fall was partly due to the Polar Prince being off-hire from the end of 2014 until its sale in June 2015, and also due to upgrade work carried out on Polar King ahead of a charter with DOF Subsea Norway.

Both the marine seismic and Ice/support segments of GC Rieber's business had full utilisation for the quarter.

Looking ahead, contract coverage for the remainder of 2015 stands at 91%, with 79% and 61% coverage for 2016 and 2017 respectively. The company's contract backlog rose to NOK3.2bn from NOK3bn at the end of Q2 2014, largely populated by medium term contracts giving an average duration of 2.4 years.

The quarter saw the arrival of the high-spec seismic vessel Polar Empress, which began a five-year contract with Dolphin Geophysical on delivery. GC Rieber also refinanced five of its vessels during the period.

In its outlook the company noted the continued pressure on the seismic and subsea market as oil majors cut expenditure and limit exploration. For seismic in particular, it is expected that the market will remain weak throughout this year and next. While the Ice/support segment is isolated from those concerns, it faces geopolitical uncertainty as the situation in Ukraine could lead to further sanctions against Russia.