OKOTOKS, Alta. — Mullen Group saw its net income fall 92.3% in the first quarter, as a result of falling oil prices and a lack of activity in the oil and gas industry.
The company produced a net profit of $2.8 million, down from $33.5 million over the same period in 2014. The decline was only partially offset by an increase in the truckling/logistics segment, which increased revenue 28.5% to $180.1 million, thanks in part to Mullen’s acquisition of Gardewine and Bernard Transport.
“It is during times like this that a diversified business model and strong balance sheet become a real advantage. Our previously announced acquisitions, the most significant being Gardewine – one of Canada’s largest trucking and logistics carriers – cushioned an otherwise very challenging quarter,” said Murray Mullen, chairman and CEO.
“The real and negative impact of low crude oil and natural gas prices hit oilfield service providers, including Mullen Group, in the first quarter. Drilling programs were slashed, capital investment decisions were either delayed or cancelled and pricing pressures were intense, all factors which contributed to the significant declines in our Oilfield Services segment.”
Worse, Mullen said the company has had to reduce its employee head count by more than 1,000.
“We have been forced to adapt to the realities of the current state of the oil and gas industry. The only bright spot last quarter was the relatively strong performance of our Trucking/Logistics segment, in spite of the modest economic performance in Canada,” Mullen added.
Mullen said the trucking/logistics segment will be the company’s most productive segment in 2015 and that Gardewine has been integrated into the company.
“Trucking and logistics remains an area of interest to our organization given the consolidation opportunities as well as the long-term potential of the industry,” said Mullen.
As for when the oil and gas industry will recover, Mullen said “The timing of this recovery is uncertain, however, the recent increases in crude oil pricing is encouraging.”