Norwegian maritime industry group Wilhelmsen ended 2018 — the first full year with present corporate structure — in loss.In the preliminary result for the year, the group reported a loss for the period of USD 75 million in 2018, compared to a loss of USD 2 million posted a year earlier.The reporting period was followed by the full consolidation of NorSea Group in the new supply services segment, reclassification of Wilh. Wilhelmsen ASA prior to the Wallenius Wilhelmsen ASA merger as a discontinued operation, and reclassification of Hyundai Glovis as a financial investment.Group EBITDA came in at USD 78 million for the year, down 60% from USD 198 million in 2017. EBITDA was up mainly due to full-year consolidation of NorSea Group.Maritime services EBITDA was USD 42 million in 2018. When adjusting for M&A expenses related to the abandoned Drew acquisition, EBITDA was up 6% for the year. A weak first quarter was followed by a gradual improvement in underlying performance. This was supported by the increased sale of marine products, new vessels on management, and positive effects from ongoing improvement initiatives, as explained by Wilhelmsen.What is more, the new supply services segment contributed with EBITDA of USD 51 million for the year. An increase in Norwegian offshore activities and a business restructuring had a positive effect on results, as well as logistics services for the NATO exercise Trident Juncture which took place during the second half of the year.The holding and investments segment had a negative EBITDA of USD 14 million, mainly related to net corporate cost.Additionally, Wilhelmsen recorded USD 36 million in share of profit from associates, of which Wallenius Wilhelmsen ASA contributed with USD 23 million. For Wallenius Wilhelmsen ASA, realised synergies and a positive development in underlying volumes were offset by reduced contractual volumes, higher bunker cost and lower rates.The company suffered USD 116 million loss on financial assets, following a USD 61 million impairment of the Survitec investment and a USD 53 million reduction in the market value of the investment in Hyundai Glovis.Quarterly performanceEBITDA ended at USD 29 million in the fourth quarter of 2018, down 12% from the previous quarter. A positive development in the maritime service segment was not enough to make up for reduced EBITDA in the supply service segment.“The underlying performance was stable in a continued challenging market,” Thomas Wilhelmsen, group CEO, said.“With activity levels on par with the previous quarter in ship service and ship management, the seasonally lower activity level in the offshore sector was offset by delivering logistics services to the NATO exercise Trident Juncture.”“The value of our investments took a beating in the quarter, leaving us with a net loss of USD 40 million.”“The beginning of 2019 has so far shown an uplift in valuation of listed entities,” he added.OutlookAccording to Wilhelmsen, market prospects for 2019 call for a steady, cautious outlook.The group’s CEO said that the year will be characterized by initiatives aimed at strengthening profitability in all of its companies.Based on the market outlook, the board expects a stable development of underlying operating performance, but with normal seasonal variations.Wilhelmsen’s exposure towards global trade and potential introduction of further tariffs and restrictions continues to create uncertainties, according to the group.“Wilhelmsen retains its robustness to meet such eventualities,” the group concluded.
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Flying under the radar, junior wrestler Collin Cudd is, in many ways, a personification of the UW wrestling team itself — he’d rather let his performance on the mat and in the gym do the talking.Not the first Cudd to wrestle at UW, Collin comes from a family full of Badger wrestlers. His older brother, Brady, as well as four of his cousins, have suited up for the Badgers at one point or another, establishing a family tradition at Wisconsin.”With my brother having wrestled here, and my cousins and five other people from (hometown) River Falls wrestling here too, I always knew I’d be a Badger,” Cudd said. “It worked out for a lot of those kids, and it’s worked out great for me too.”Family history aside, Cudd has made a name for himself at UW, earning NCAA tournament berths in each of the past two seasons despite a tumultuous career.After starting last season with a promising 7-3 record, Cudd seemed poised to establish himself as one of the Big Ten’s top wrestlers, but the 125-pounder struggled through the second half of the season. Cudd finished with an 11-15 record, including a poor 2-6 conference performance.But Cudd didn’t get discouraged.Even though he was unseeded in the Big Ten tournament, the then sophomore managed two impressive upset victories to finish fifth in his weight class, ending the season on a very high note.And although he is one of the older and more experienced wrestlers on a young Wisconsin team, Cudd admits not having much interest in playing the role of vocal leader, he’d rather do it quietly.”I’m kind of shy, and I’m not really a big talker,” Cudd said. “I think I choose to lead by example instead.” With so many freshmen and sophomores wrestling for the Badgers this season, Cudd understands it is inevitable that the younger grapplers will watch him closely, and it’s his job to make sure the example he sets is a positive one.”Being an older guy, I know some of the younger guys look up to me,” he said. “I know that I have to work hard and have a good work ethic in order to set a good example for them.”His up and down wrestling career has also given Cudd the experience to set a strong example of perseverance and fortitude for younger wrestlers to follow.”I took a lot of big steps at the end of the season, and in the off-season I was able to use that and work hard, and it’s carried over to this season as well,” Cudd said.Riding momentum from the end of last year, Cudd has high hopes of building off his conference tournament performance and putting together success over a complete season this year.Citing head coach Barry Davis’ mantra of consistency, Cudd has learned that even as the schedule gets tougher, he needs to compete with the same level of intensity and hard work in order to be successful.”You have your ups and downs in wrestling, [but] the real challenge is [maintaining] momentum throughout the season,” Cudd said. “You’re going to hit some bumps in the road, but you have to work through them and pick yourself back up.”So far, Cudd is off to yet another hot start, compiling a solid 10-3 record as the stretch run of the season nears.However, this year Cudd plans to keep his momentum going, and with the wrestling program supporting him, Cudd knows it’s possible.”This is a great program, with great facilities and great coaches,” Cudd said. “[And] that’s helped me to keep getting better as a wrestler which will be important for the rest of this season.”