“The positive momentum in ordering activity continued in the second quarter of 2018. Although vessel contracting activity has been somewhat slower than anticipated, our extensive portfolio of solutions and a favourable contracting mix resulted in the Marine Solutions’ order intake developing well. I am pleased to note the increased demand for exhaust gas cleaning solutions in both the newbuild and retrofit markets ahead of the global sulphur regulations, which enter into force in 2020. In the Services business, we have also seen continued interest in service agreements, the agreement to optimise the maintenance of all Wärtsilä thrusters installed within the Transocean fleet being a highlight of the quarter. Market trends remain favourable in the Energy Solutions business, and our project pipeline provides confidence for improved activity in the second half.
Net sales in the second quarter were affected by the timing of power plant deliveries and by customers continuing to limit spending to essential repairs and maintenance, while the operating profit was in line with last year. Looking ahead, we expect deliveries to be concentrated to the latter part of the year. A pick up in transactional service activity and the resulting effect on the group sales mix will be central to the development of our profitability in the second half. The impact of increased geopolitical uncertainty on customer decision-making remains a concern.
Maximising renewable generation is essential in ensuring a sustainable and profitable future for the energy industry. In this context, Wärtsilä has launched a new vision for the energy market. Our ambition is to lead the industry’s transformation towards a future that utilises 100% renewable energy, with flexible capacity as the enabler. Coupled with our Smart Marine vision, this reinforces our commitment to developing sustainable societies with smart technology.”