September 21, 2021 9:45 AM, EDT

Maersk Is Heading for Biggest Profit in Danish History

Maersk ship Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg News

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A.P. Moller-Maersk A/S is heading for a full-year profit that will match its combined results from the past nine years and make business history in its home country, Denmark.

A combination of several extreme factors — including bottlenecks caused by pandemic consumption — is boosting earnings at the world’s largest shipping line. The company last week raised its financial guidance for the third time in five months.

Maersk’s 2021 result will be a record in Danish corporate history, according to a note published Sept. 21 by Sydbank A/S analyst Mikkel Emil Jensen. It will be about three times higher than Maersk’s previous record in 2014 and more than double the 2020 result of Novo Nordisk A/S, Denmark’s most valuable company.

Net income will reach about $16.2 billion in 2021, according to the average estimate of seven analysts surveyed by Bloomberg after the Sept. 16 profit upgrade. That is up from an average estimate of $3 billion at the beginning of the year.

But for Maersk, 2021 profits stem from temporary phenomena and therefore it’s unlikely that the container line, or any other Danish company, will break the upcoming record “for many, many years,” Jensen said.

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