The Port of Hueneme in fiscal year 2013 achieved a record $13.4 million in gross operating revenue, a 10.4 percent increase over fiscal year 2012, according to the results of a recently completed financial audit.
Port CEO Kristin Decas and CFO Andrew Palomares submitted the auditor’s report to Hueneme’s Board of Harbor Commissioners at its Oct. 28, 2013 business meeting.
In fiscal year 2012, the port moved 1.31 million metric tons, but that jumped by 8.5 percent the following fiscal period, to 1.43 million. Overall total revenue jumped 12 percent year-to-year, rising from $12 million to $13.69 million, according to port data. Additionally, the port’s net assets grew by $7.2 million in FY 2013, an increase from the previous year’s $4.2 million.
Also according to the audit, expenses increased by $1.02 million, primarily a result of increased insurance costs and new accounting requirements requisite to recording previously differed bond costs.
Audit numbers show that the Port of Hueneme realized best year in volume since inception in 1937. The port says it attributes the record year in large part to continued economic recovery at the national level, as well as business retention and a sustained customer base.
Of specific importance was that the agricultural product market, which the port relies heavily on, made strong returns in fiscal year 2013. The banana trade hit a peak year realizing an historic increase of 5.7 percent. Traditionally the banana business shows an inelastic response to economic trends, but this year showed unprecedented increases. This in part stemmed from the increased capacity of Del Monte ships and the transition of Chiquita from a 10-day service to a weekly service.
Also, Del Monte’s dual use ships with roll-on/roll-off capabilities allowed for increased cargo diversification and higher exports.
Yara fertilizer and environmental solution products continued to see significant gains in market share increasing their cargo throughput at Hueneme by nearly 24 percent. The port also saw growth in the handling of other fresh fruit and vegetable commodities, with activity up about seven percent in imports and a whopping 103.3 percent in exports.
“We are proud of our record and most pleased to see the uptick in revenues, but recognize we are faced with climbing expenses and have challenges ahead,” Decas said. “The increases in revenue at this time are vital to replenishing our working capital reserves that have been depleted from the investment in major capital projects, including the installation of shoreside power.”
The Port of Hueneme’s 2013 fiscal year ran from July 1, 2012 through June 30, 2013.