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Jan Kastrup-Nielsen: Still some way to go

The bottom line in J. Lauritzen's 2nd quarter interim report was unmistakable. A profit and a significant improvement from the disastrous year 2013. But CEO Jan Kastrup-Nielsen is only partially pleased, he tells ShippingWatch.

A bottom line profit at one of the world's biggest dry bulk carriers after the 1st half of 2014 ought to put a smile on the face of most CEO's. And especially among J. Lauritzen's management team, which has for the past few years been struggling with a bad market and, in particular, breached contracts from other bulk players. Things became so bad that the the carrier's deficit in the first half of 2013 almost reached USD 300 million.

But J. Lauritzen's CEO for the past year and half, Jan Kastrup-Nielsen, is not quite ready to say Mission Completed. Because, one, the company's net profit only came to USD 29 million in the first half of the year, and two, the sale of the carrier's STX claim resulted in a USD 30 million one-off profit, which means that on Lauritzen's de facto bottom line, the carrier is still struggling to turn a profit on its core business, namely transporting dry cargo.

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