CALGARY, ALBERTA, CANADA — Net income at Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd. increased to C$434 million in the first quarter ended March 31, equal to C$3.10 per share on the common stock, up 25% from C$348 million, or C$2.41 per share, in the same period a year ago. Revenues, meanwhile, increased 6.3% to C$1.767 billion from C$1.662 billion.
“This past winter was one of the most challenging in my railroading career,” said Keith Creel, president and chief executive officer. “I applaud our employees for their resiliency in overcoming loss and pushing through extraordinary conditions and challenges throughout February and March. Our commitment to precision scheduled railroading enabled a strong recovery and gives us a solid foundation moving forward.”
CP said it generated C$380 million in revenues from movement of grain in the first quarter, up 6% from C$357 million in the same period a year ago.
“On the bulk commodities, with network challenges certainly hindering our Canadian grain volumes as well as continued weakness in U.S. grain, volumes declined 4%,” John Kenneth Brooks, executive vice-president and chief marketing officer, said during an April 23 conference call with analysts. “However, strong pricing helped to act as an offset, resulting in record Q1 revenue for Canadian grain. And now with the Port of Thunder Bay open and strong network momentum … expect grain volumes to remain solid right into early summer.
“The first three weeks of this quarter have been very encouraging both with Canadian and U.S. grain trending up double digits. I’d also note that we have now 650 of our new high-capacity grain hoppers in service, allowing us to drive efficiency and improved asset utilization throughout the grain supply chain. We expect to have approximately 1,900 more in service by the end of this year.”