08 May 2015

AGM Statement

Clarkson PLC (Clarksons) is the world's leading shipping services group. From offices in 20 countries on six continents, we play a vital intermediary role in the movement of the majority of commodities around the world.

At the Annual General Meeting to be held in London today, James Hughes-Hallett, Chairman of Clarksons, will make the following trading statement covering the period from 1 January 2015 to 7 May 2015:

Trading Overview
Overall, Clarksons has made a solid start to the year in the face of a number of material headwinds. Shipping and offshore is a multi-cyclical business and the challenges witnessed in a number of our markets at the end of 2014, arising from a demand supply imbalance and the reduced oil price environment, have continued into the first half of this year. Whilst no business is immune, the breadth and depth of our best in class fully integrated offer positions us strongly to meet these challenges. The acquisition of RS Platou ASA ("Platou"), which completed during the first quarter extends our integrated offer still further and in more challenging markets it is this market breadth which ensures that where there is activity, we are at the forefront.

Integration of our two businesses is continuing as planned and we are pleased with the progress being made. As we identified at the time of the acquisition, the businesses are extremely complementary with very little overlap and we remain confident that the acquisition will accelerate our strategy to provide clients with a market-leading integrated offering across Broking, Financial, Support and Research.

We are now rebranding our broking and financial services operations as "Clarksons Platou" to reflect the strength of both brands in their market places. Our support and research businesses will continue to trade as Clarksons, testament to the longstanding heritage of the Clarksons brand in these markets.

Broking
Dry Bulk markets remain severely under pressure with the Baltic Dry Index down 56% and reaching a 30 year low in February 2015. In the offshore markets, the depressed oil price has forced operators to review their strategies for the year and we anticipate this will result in a slippage in activity into the second half of 2015. Our Tanker and Specialised products teams have seen increased activity levels, our S&P team remains active across the sectors and we continue to develop our already strong position in the container market where we see long term opportunities.

Financial
The acquisition of Platou's investment banking and project finance business transforms the scale and shape of our financial operations and our combined teams are now focussed on leveraging the substantial opportunities this brings. Activity levels in the capital markets were generally quieter in the first quarter, however they have now started to improve and we are currently working on a significant number of live mandates in restructuring, public and private equity financing, M&A and general advisory.

Support
Our port services business has delivered a steady performance. Dry bulk shipments at UK ports have seen continued improvement but as anticipated, our northern England and Scotland offshore oil and gas related revenues remain suppressed, with activity levels still low.

Research
We have seen a good performance across our research business with an increase in sales during the period.

Outlook
The near term industry outlook remains mixed and the challenges in some of our markets continue. The delivery profile of our activities in broking and financial will result in a weighting in performance towards the second half of the year. We do however anticipate further growth in activity levels in a number of key areas of our business.

Our strategy has proven to be robust in this trading environment. We have a unique, market-leading offer and with the acquisition integration progressing well and with the strong balance sheet underpinning our business model, we have confidence in Clarksons' continued progress in performance.

Enquiries:
Clarkson PLC:
Andi Case, Chief Executive
Jeff Woyda, Finance Director
020 7334 0000

Hudson Sandler:
Andrew Nicolls
Kate Hoare
Katie Matthews
020 7796 4133