Motorway profits for firm treble in a year
A MOTORWAY operator saw its profits almost treble in the space of one year on just one route, it was announced in financial results yesterday -- which the company said had "exceeded expectations".
New accounts filed by Eurolink Motorway Operation Ltd show that profits from its tolled N4/N6 Kilcock to Kinnegad motorway increased by 171pc from €1.23m in 2009 to €3.352m in the 12 months to the end of December 2010.
The €328m motorway was completed in December 2005 by a consortium in a Public Private Partnership (PPP) that allows the operator, led by Spanish firm Cintra, to toll the road until 2033.
The figures show that the company generated revenues of €22.9m last year -- a 4pc increase on the €22m generated in 2009.
It recorded an operating profit of €12m last year.
According to the directors' report, the "financial result exceeded expectations mainly because of savings in expenditure and a decrease in interest rates".
Last year, the company paid the National Roads Authority €745,230 in respect of revenue share obligations under the PPP contract.
The 39km motorway from Kinnegad to Kilcock is an extension of the Kilcock-Maynooth-Leixlip motorway on the N4/N6 motorway leading from Dublin.
Motorists using the route must pay a €2.70 toll for cars and a €6.60 toll for trucks with six axles or more.
Despite being in a recession, toll revenues increased by 3.9pc on the route.
The company said this was due to an increase in overall traffic as well as an increase in the percentage of heavy goods vehicles using it.
Toll rates on the route remained unchanged from 2009.
The opening of the motorway removed one of the most notorious bottlenecks in the country at Kinnegad, and saves 20 minutes for drivers using the N6 and N4 Galway and Sligo roads.
The directors' report stated that "traffic volumes increased on the prior year with average daily traffic increasing by 2.9pc".
The figures show that bank interest payments of €9.7m last year reduced the company's pre-tax profits to €2.3m.
The filings show that the company received a tax credit totalling €993,000, resulting in the overall profit of €3.3m.
The profit also takes account of non-cash depreciation costs of €7.4m showing that cash earnings from the route totalled €10.7m.
The figures show that the company employs 27 people to operate the tolled route and last year staff costs came to €1.6m.
The figures show that the company had bank loans totalling €143.5m at the end of last year.
The company had €9.2m in cash at the end of last year.
Motorway tolls to increase: See Budget special