National Marine Dredging Company (NMDC) has seen strong revenue growth over the past few years, averaging more than 46 per cent a year since 2009, when it reported revenues of AED1.25bn. The biggest single contributor in 2011 was the Zakum project, which brought in AED946m. Net profits have been more modest at AED413m in 2009, AED452m in 2010 and AED472m in 2011.

Last year saw a more challenging operating environment for NMDC as reflected in its financial results. The company’s preliminary earnings for 2012 shows revenues grew to AED3.12bn, an increase of 16 per cent compared with 2011, marking a slowdown in growth. Net profits fell 28 per cent to just AED339m. NMDC put this poorer performance  down to aggressive competition in the market.

With major offshore real estate developments shelved following the global financial crisis, the Gulf has lost its status as a hub for dredging. This has meant firms such as NMDC have had to look to the oil and gas sector for work.

NMDC is also focusing on marine civil engineering to drive revenues. In 2008, this contributed less than 40 per cent of NMDC’s total revenues, but over the past four years it has increased to 70 per cent. The firm believes this will aid its goal of achieving higher growth.