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Selfinvest: Growth strategy yields third highest result ever

June 17, 2021

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  • In the financial year 2020/21, Selfinvest achieved a revenue of DKK 66 billion - EBITDA of DKK 948 million and a profit before tax of DKK 621 million.
  • Selfinvest, the Østergaard-Nielsen family office, cements its solid financial position within investments that contribute significantly to the overall result.
  • The pandemic crisis caused a significant change in supply and demand in the global freight market, which combined with the collapse of the oil prices resulted in a sharp decline in earnings at the Group's shipping company and the bunker-related companies.
  • Record results in several of the Group's companies.

In recent years, Selfinvest has pursued a comprehensive growth strategy that will give the entire group more legs to lean on. The effect of the strategy can be clearly read in the Group's annual report, where the year's notable acquisitions, strong performance in several USTC companies and not least a significant gain from financial investments give a satisfactory total profit before tax of DKK 621 million.

The Selfinvest Group thus achieved the third highest profit before tax ever, which was far from a given in a very unusual year. The COVID-19 pandemic resulted in a dramatic drop in global freight market demand and combined with collapsing oil prices, this has significantly affected earnings.

"Considering the uncertainty, we saw at the start of the financial year and how turbulent the year has been, I am proud of the results we have achieved. We have managed to grow and expand our market positions despite the crisis, and our employees around the world have delivered an impressive effort in a very unusual year," says owner and CEO Torben Østergaard-Nielsen.

Bunker Holding maintained momentum in the financial year 2020/21 and delivered growth in volume of 10%. This resulted in improved market shares, but a declining bottom line due to a pressured bunker market with very low oil prices. Differently with the logistics and shipping company SDK FREJA, which more than doubled its earnings after a landmark year. Unit IT also reports good results with 25% growth on the bottom line and focus on continued growth through acquisitions and new business areas. In 2020/21, Uni-Tankers was seriously affected by the pandemic in a rare and challenging year. The company had to see revenue fall by 3.4% during the year to DKK 1,249 million. Finally, 2020/21 marked a new record year for Selected Car Group, which acquired the company SpecialCars and achieved a profit before tax of DKK 12 million corresponding to a growth of 43% compared to last year.

Investment company cements its financial strength

Selfinvest is the Østergaard-Nielsen family office, which manages the family's assets. Throughout the year, the company has continued its positive development as a holding and investment company and has strengthened the investment platform so that today it is more broadly based and anchors the active ownership of the Group. Overall, the business area delivered a satisfactory return with a total investment result of DKK 202 million corresponding to a return above 16%.

"We have used the past year to think ahead and lay out a new strategy for our investment activities, where we have especially upgraded investments in real estate and directly in growth companies. The return on direct investments and real estate has increased significantly compared to last year, and our current portfolio is characterised by great robustness," says Mikkel Hammershøj, director of Selfinvest.

Organic growth complemented by strong acquisitions

Selfinvest and USTC have either directly or through subsidiaries in the past financial year acquired several companies in various industries that strengthen the existing legs of the business.

"We have chosen to make investments that can give the Group more legs to lean on. Looking back on the past year, we have focused on strengthening and growing our various units. The acquisition of OceanConnect, CM Biomass and FREJA are good examples of how far we have moved in just a year’s time," says owner and COO of USTC Nina Østergaard Borris.

One of the benefits of family ownership is the agility and rapid decision-making process that enables Selfinvest and USTC to be at the forefront of market, product, and technology developments. At the same time, family ownership provides the opportunity to have a longer perspective in mind.

"We have always been ready for change and to move the company to where the next opportunity is. At the same time, we can plan and maintain a constant course without having to worry about temporary ripples on the surface. This means that right now we are making investments that may not generate return next year, but only in several years’ time," says Torben Østergaard Nielsen.

Expectations for the coming year

The Group's activity level, revenues and earnings are generally affected by a number of external factors, such as development in the global freight market, oil price development and the general development within green energy. This year, the COVID-19 pandemic has contributed significant challenges for the Group and its markets, which is not expected to continue at the same level in 2021/22, and thus the expectations for the financial year 2021/22 are that earnings will be slightly above 2020/21 results.

 

Media enquires

Group Communications

Phone: +45 7879 8228

press@ustc.dk

 

Terms of user for images

Please note that USTC Group owned images may only be used in editorial publications.