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Stena Line doubles its profit


The 2006 profit for Stena Line, Europe’s leading ferry company, was the strongest since the mid 1990s. The profit for the year of SEK 540 million (GBP £39.79m) is more than double that of 2005. Key factors include more stable growth on the passenger side, continued strong development for the freight business and the ongoing success of cost-cutting activities.

“We are very pleased with our progress in 2006. Reporting increased profits for the fourth year in a row is proof that we have chosen the right strategy. Our performance also gives us a stable foundation on which to develop our business even further,” said Stena Line CEO Gunnar Blomdahl.

2006 was a good year for volumes of passengers, vehicles and freight units. Freight continued to increase, while passenger and vehicle numbers stabilised compared with 2005.

“The strength of Stena Line’s business is the combination of passenger and freight business. We take this into account when rebuilding vessels and investing in new ones. Current examples include the lengthening of Stena Britannica and Stena Hollandica, and the two new Superferries costing SEK 4 billion (GBP £291.9m) where we are investing in fully developed and modern concepts for both freight and passengers,” said Gunnar Blomdahl.

Two further examples of newly built Stena Line vessels are the RoPax ferry, Stena Trader, which has operated on the Hoek van Holland-Killingholme route since the autumn of 2006, and its sister-ship, Stena Traveller, which will be introduced on the route in June 2007.

The focus for future strategy is on continued development of the business. This includes continuing with major investments in the fleet and developing Stena Line’s products and services.

“We have invested over SEK 800 million* in recent years in renovating and refurbishing, which has resulted in new, modern restaurants, bars and cabins. In parallel to the renovations we are also continually investing in added value for customers. Examples include wireless connection to the Internet onboard, improved dialogue for online booking, simplified pricing and the option of using mobile phones throughout the journey,” says Gunnar Blomdahl.

Staying at the leading edge of development and living up to and preferably exceeding passengers’ expectations are huge challenges. Another is to handle factors such as the high oil prices.

“Customers’ expectations on our business are changing faster than ever. This places considerable demands on us. We are constantly affected by other global factors, too. The high price of oil has a major impact on our business. This means that even in the future we will need to focus on efficiency and cost awareness,” commented Gunnar Blomdahl.


Notes to editors:
* GBP £58.9m

About Stena Line Ferries
In the UK alone, Stena Line offers over 30 daily crossings on its five different routes to Ireland (Stranraer to Belfast, Fleetwood to Larne, Holyhead to Dublin, Holyhead to Dun Laoghaire and Fishguard to Rosslare) as well as two daily crossings on its Harwich to Hoek van Holland route providing fast and efficient crossings with excellent onboard services and facilities.


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