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ADOLFO
07/03/2024

Baleària carries more than 5 million passengers in 2023, with financial results that demonstrate the solvency and strength of its business model

  • The shipping company achieved a historic 652M euros in turnover (+15%) and recorded an EBITDA of 117M euros in its 25th anniversary year 
  • The company invested 113M euros, mainly in its sustainable fleet and digitalisation 
  • Baleària's environmental commitment was expanded through the addition of two electric-powered vessels and the construction of the second gas-powered fast ferry.
  • The ratio of tons of CO2 emitted per mile decreased by 8% thanks to the increased use of natural gas and other eco-efficient measures
  • Staff numbers reached a record high of 2,500
  • Social cash flow hit 730 million euros

 

Baleària carried 5.2 million passengers, 1.4 million vehicles and 7.4 million linear metres of cargo in the 2023 financial year, surpassing its historical levels in the same year it celebrated 25 years of activity. Turnover also reached a record 652 million euros (up 15% on the previous year). EBITDA stood at 117 million euros and, despite a 16% drop compared to the previous year, "shows the solvency and strength of Baleària's business model", in the words of the company's chairman, Adolfo Utor. The results for the financial year amounted to 40 million euros, "a positive figure that responds to the company's growth with the opening of new routes, the acquisition of new ships and the increase in financial expenses".


Owning fleet of 30 ships, as well as operating a dozen chartered ships, Baleària offered 25 routes in six different countries. By business area, 59% of the turnover corresponds to the passenger area and 36% to cargo transport. In addition, 75% of the turnover comes from domestic routes, while the remaining 25% is from international connections.


Passenger and cargo traffic

Baleària saw growth in all markets, with the Balearic Islands remaining the number one in terms of both passengers and cargo. As such, the shipping company was once again key to the mobility of residents and tourists on all its connections: 5.2 million passengers were transported along with 1.8 million vehicles, up 14% and 18%, respectively, compared to the previous financial year. In terms of cargo, Baleària demonstrated its crucial role in the economic development of the regions in which it operates, transporting 7.4 million linear metres (6% more than in the 2022 financial year) thanks to the reliability and flexibility of its service.


Sustainable mobility

Furthermore, the president of Baleària explained that the company's main milestones in 2023, in addition to the celebration of its 25th anniversary, were directly related to its commitment to sustainable mobility: the incorporation of two electric-powered ferries and the launch of the innovative Margarita Salas fast ferry. "This commitment to eco-efficiency in the maritime sector allowed us, in 2023, to be the first Spanish shipping company to obtain the prestigious Green Marine Europe label", commented Utor. He also stressed that in 2023, 113 million euros were invested in construction, acquisition and improvements in the fleet's sustainability and the digitalisation of key processes, 85% more than in the previous year. It should be remembered that the shipping company is engaged in 9 projects involving European funds that promote the transition to clean energy and improve digital connectivity.


The shipping company currently has 10 ships, plus another that will start operating in June, with dual engines; a versatile technology that allows it to sail using different fuels, such as natural gas today and renewable CO2-neutral sources in the future. "Having overcome the adverse situation of previous years, we have increased the use of natural gas", Utor explained, "and this has allowed us to avoid emitting 28,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide. Thanks to the increase in this energy and other eco-efficiency measures in the fleet, the ratio of tonnes of CO2 emitted per mile decreased by 8%.


Utor emphasised Baleària's commitment "to reducing carbon emissions to zero by 2050" despite "the complexity of this challenge". He also referred to the new European regulations to control emissions and ensure an effective reduction of the maritime transport sector's carbon footprint, which will have a high economic impact in 2024.


Job creation and job stability

In terms of job creation, in the 2023 high season, for the first time ever the shipping company reached 2,500 workers (10% more than in the previous financial year), representing 62 nationalities. 94% of the company's direct employees in Spain are permanent, reflecting a high level of job stability. In addition, Utor highlighted the fact that the number of women in the workforce grew by 27% and that Baleària has 80 women in leadership positions.


"We have highly skilled and motivated teams, which are the driving force of our company. We are committed to attracting and retaining the best talent by offering them sound professional opportunities", said the shipping company's chairman. Highlights of the measures implemented in 2023 include the new collective Fleet agreement with a target-based remuneration system, the flexible pay programme, the work-life balance and flexibility measures introduced on land, and the updating of the equality plan.


Finally, in terms of involvement with society, Utor pointed out that the shipping company's social cash flow was 730 million euros. He also recalled that 77% of suppliers are local and that the Baleària Foundation has carried out 280 actions in the social, environmental, sporting and cultural spheres. In this latter area, of particular note are the 39 exhibitions by more than 300 artists, which attracted more than 33,000 visitors.