Interim Statement January – September 2023

Earnings position

Key figures

in € million


1–9 | 2023


1–9 | 2022









- 7.1 %







- 28.5 %

EBITDA margin in %






- 5.8 pp







- 52.8 %

EBIT margin in %






- 6.8 pp

Profit after tax and non-controlling interests






- 83.0 %

ROCE in %






- 5.1 pp

In the first nine months of the year, container throughput at HHLA’s container terminals decreased year-on-year by 8.5 % to 4,455 thousand TEU (previous year: 4,869 thousand TEU). The decrease at the Hamburg container terminals was primarily due to strong volume declines in the Far East shipping region, and in particular China, as well as the loss of feeder traffic with Russia as a result of EU sanctions. The main reason for lower volumes at the international container terminals was the decline in cargo volumes at Container Terminal Odessa (CTO) after seaborne handling there was suspended by the authorities at the end of February 2022 following the Russian invasion. Only grain ships operating under the Black Sea Grain Initiative, which expired in July, could be handled at CTO up to this time.

Container transport decreased by a moderate 3.4 % to 1,222 thousand TEU (previous year: 1,266 thousand TEU). A strong decline in road transport contrasted with a slight decrease in rail transport, particularly on Polish routes.

The HHLA Group’s revenue fell by 7.1 % to € 1,090.0 million in the reporting period (previous year: € 1,172.7 million). In the Container segment, this was mainly due to the decline in volumes, falling storage fees and the suspension of seaborne handling at the terminal in Odessa. There was an opposing effect from the level of rail transport revenue, which was adjusted to the rising costs of purchased services.

In its Container, Intermodal and Logistics segments, the listed Port Logistics subgroup generated revenue of € 1,061.3 million in the reporting period (previous year: € 1,145.8 million). This decrease almost matched the trend for the Group as a whole. The non-listed Real Estate subgroup posted revenue of € 35.0 million (previous year: € 32.9 million).

Other operating income rose by 31.6 % to € 45.8 million (previous year: € 34.8 million).

Despite the inflationary environment, operating expenses increased by just 1.2 % to € 1,067.2 million (previous year: € 1,054.1 million) due to strict cost controls. The slight decrease in personnel expenses was largely related to the downward trend in performance data. The marginal increase in depreciation and amortisation resulted from the expansion of business in rail transport and from capitalisations following the completion of a project development in the Speicherstadt historical warehouse district. The cost of materials rose slightly, primarily due to the increased cost of purchasing services for rail traffic, particularly energy. The significant rise in other operating expenses resulted mainly from increased maintenance expenses at the Hamburg container terminals.

The operating result (EBIT) decreased by 52.8 % to € 75.6 million in the reporting period (previous year: € 160.1 million). The EBIT margin amounted to 6.9 % (previous year: 13.7 %). In the Port Logistics subgroup, EBIT fell by 57.4 % to € 61.8 million (previous year: € 145.3 million), and in the Real Estate subgroup by 7.3 % to € 13.5 million (previous year: € 14.6 million).

Net expenses from the financial result rose by € 10.2 million, or 46.6 %, to € 32.0 million (previous year: € 21.8 million).

At 33.6 %, the Group’s effective tax rate was higher than in the previous year (previous year: 32.1 %). This increase in the tax rate is primarily due to the application of the effective tax rate based on previous results, which has a disproportionately strong impact on the current profit situation.

Profit after tax decreased by 69.2 %, from € 93.9 million to € 29.0 million. Profit after tax and non-controlling interests was strongly down on the previous year at € 11.9 million (previous year: € 69.8 million). Earnings per share amounted to € 0.16 (previous year: € 0.93). Earnings per share for the listed Port Logistics subgroup were € 0.04 (previous year: € 0.85). Earnings per share of the non-listed Real Estate subgroup were up year-on-year at € 3.25 (previous year: € 3.16). The return on capital employed (ROCE) amounted to 4.3 % (previous year: 9.4 %).