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CMA CGM is keeping tight-lipped about its third-quarter airline results. In fact, about all its results.
If you look at the numbers on the press release it issued on Friday, its airline figures are nowhere to be seen – while, nonsensically, CMA’s maritime and logistics revenues, apparently make a higher total than reported group revenue.
As one financial analyst said: “It can write whatever it likes.”
While CMA CGM has previously separated air, perhaps this time it is included in its logistics division, primarily made up of Ceva.
Its logistics arm enjoyed revenues of $4.34bn in Q3, up 14.9% on the previous quarter and up 51% year on year, with ebitda of $359m – up 5.6% and 33.1% respectively.
CMA said: “Growth was primarily led by maritime and air freight activities. The contract logistics business continued to recover. The division’s revenue and ebitda growth was also lifted by the acquisitions of Ingram Micro CLS, Colis Privé and Gefco.
“The latter, whose acquisition was completed in late July, contributed $750m to logistics revenue for the period.”
Market talk indicates that the group is looking to bolster its air freight forwarding numbers, however. According to Loadstar Premium, CMA is rumoured to be considering buying Bolloré Logistics, which is the 10th-largest air freight forwarder, or perhaps Geodis (16th).
Ceva is 14th–largest in airfreight, according to Ti data, and one source told Premium that Bolloré’s “strong airfreight set-up in Paris is very appealing for CMA CGM”.
However, CMA has been careful not to associate its forwarding arm with its airline, so it would seem likely the airline figures are elsewhere in the group’s obfuscated accounting. The only mentions of the airline note its new Paris-Hong Kong service and that it would double its freighter fleet to 12 by 2026.
CMA has six freighters, but one A330-200F, set to deliver this month, appears not to have started commercial service yet, according to aircraft data and tracking sites. The other three A330-200Fs are operated by Air Belgium, one on behalf of EAT Leipzig, while another does not appear to be flying.
Meanwhile, Emirates SkyCargo is to wet-lease an A330-200F from Air Belgium, starting Wednesday, to serve Jakarta and Auckland, but it is not clear whether this will be a CMA aircraft or not.
The French group is keeping its cards close to its chest.