Maersk says Windows ransomware attack may cost it US$300m

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Its parent company said it made a loss of $264 million in the second quarter, against a profit of $118 million a year earlier.

Despite the second-quarter loss and impact of the attack, Maersk maintained its full-year guidance of generating an underlying profit above the $711 million achieved in 2016.

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Maersk also said it expected a $200 million to $300 million bill from a June cyber attack that disrupted its container shipping operations for weeks.

The company's Maersk Line unit, traditionally its biggest earner, returned to profitability in the quarter as the market continued its emergence from one of the industry's worst downturns, with demand outgrowing capacity for the third consecutive quarter while average freight rates stormed higher. Revenue rose to $9.6 billion from $8.7 billion. Skou said the terminal business faces two underlying challenges: revenue per move due to competitive pressure and a lack of growth in volumes. "Oil dependent economies like Russian Federation and Brazil are no longer contracting, which is also good news". "That's positive", he said. At the group level, Maersk, which has a oil, gas, and drilling interests outside of its transportation division, saw operating profit fall 54 percent in the second quarter to $302 million, based on impairments amounting to $732 million incurred by APMT, Maersk Tankers, and its towage and salvage division Svitzer.

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Port terminals ground to a halt and ships were left floating at sea, although the world's largest container shipping line said it remained "in full control of all vessels throughout the situation and all employees were safe".

Its Maersk Line container division took the biggest hit from the cyber attack, the firm said, though Maersk Line still forecast an improvement in underlying profit compared to past year.

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The group reported a net loss of $264m over the half, significantly undershooting the $507m net profit that analysts polled by Reuters had forecast. The Maasvlakte II terminal in Rotterdam would be able to make import deliveries starting Monday, it said.

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