DFDS Q3 2022: outlook raised by strong Q3

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  • Q3 EBITDA up 88% to DKK 1.59bn
  • Higher earnings in all business units
  • Passenger earnings 11% above 2019 (pre-Covid-19)
  • Financial leverage of 2.9x back in target range
  • Full-year EBITDA outlook raised to DKK 4.8-5.0bn

Group revenue increased 64% to DKK 7.2bn driven by the continued recovery in passenger numbers and spending, as well as price increases for freight services to cover rising energy and other costs. Revenue was also increased by the acquisitions of HSF Logistics Group in September 2021 and ICT Logistics in January 2022.

Total EBITDA before special items increased 88% to DKK 1,591m.

The EBITDA for freight ferry and logistics activities increased 28% to DKK 1,036m driven by higher earnings in all business units except for Channel.

Oil price increases were covered by the contractual pass-through clauses for ferry services.

Cost coverage for logistics services improved in Q3 on the back of initiatives taken in previous quarters.

The Q3 EBITDA for passenger activities in the Channel, Baltic Sea, and Passenger business units increased to DKK 569m from DKK 52m in 2021.

The continued recovery in passenger travel improved earnings in all three business units.

Outlook 2022

The outlook for EBITDA before special items is raised to DKK 4.8-5.0bn following a strong Q3 result and steady demand in both freight and passenger markets (previously DKK 4.4-4.8bn, 2021: DKK 3.4bn).

Revenue is expected to grow by around 45% compared to 2021 (previously around 40%). The outlook is detailed on page 10 in the full report.

DFDS October volumes: mixed growth picture

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  • Volumes were lower across northern Europe while Mediterranean volumes continued to grow. Total volumes in October 2022 were 9.0% below 2021.
  • North Sea volumes were below 2021 due to continued automotive production stops caused by shortages of parts. Labour strikes in the Felixstowe port also reduced volumes.
  • Mediterranean’s volume growth rate picked up again in October following a dip in the growth rate in Q3.
  • Channel’s volumes were significantly below 2021 due to a continued decrease in total market volumes and the addition of capacity by Irish Ferries.
  • Baltic Sea’s volumes were below 2021 due to the war in Ukraine, although the percentage decrease was the lowest recorded in 2022.
  • For the last twelve months 2022-21, the total transported freight lane metres decreased 1.7% to 42.8m from 43.5m in 2021-20.


  • The number of passengers continued to recover and increased 172% to 332k equal to 84% of volumes in October 2019, the latest comparable month pre-Covid-19.
  • The number of cars equalled 85% of volumes in 2019.
  • For the last twelve months 2022-21, the total number of passengers was 3.5m compared to 0.8m in 2021-20 and 5.1m in 2019.