Emanuele Lauro, Chairman and Chief Executive of Monaco-based Scorpio Bulkers, has told the company’s shareholder’s in the annual report that 2017 was characterised by an improved environment for the dry bulk industry.
“With the world economy firing on all cylinders in 2017, the demand for the commodities we carry and the distances they need to go continued to increase. A case in point – and an example we touched on last year – is coal. For now and for the foreseeable future, as China tries to urgently address corruption and – most especially – pollution while all the while maintaining economic growth, domestic coal production will decline and long-haul imports will increase.
“The consequences on our markets are broad and deep: it is not simply larger vessels shuttling coal from Australia to China. Second order effects include our Ultramaxes carrying coal from the United States to Europe. Tertiary effects include tightening supply/demand balances which support freight on cargoes like steel slabs from Russia, bauxite from Brazil, and logs from New Zealand. Meanwhile, robust demand is being met with historically low fleet supply growth.”
For the year ended December 31, 2017, the Company’s GAAP net loss was $59.7 million, or $0.83 loss per diluted share compared to a GAAP net loss of $124.8 million, or $2.22 loss per diluted share for the prior year.
On February 5, 2018, the Board of Directors declared a quarterly cash dividend of $0.02 per share on the Company’s common stock. Total vessel revenue in 2017 increased to 162.2 million from 78.4 million in 2016.