Aug 5, 2014

Transurban’s (toll) road to riches

You might want to buy shares in Transurban -- the company is flush with your cash anyway.

Paddy Manning

Crikey business editor

Australia’s biggest toll road operator, Transurban, is raking in the cash again, with traffic, revenues and earnings all up significantly in 2013-14. More growth is also on the way as the giant integrates Queensland Motorways, which it bought for $7 billion in April, and looks to build new roads.

Transurban chief executive Scott Charlton this morning unveiled what he called a “no-surprises” profit result and confirmed a full-year distribution of 35c per share, up 12% on the year before, and the outlook is for the same growth again in 2015, to 39c. This year Australian traffic rose 6% year on year, overall road revenues rose 13% to an even billion dollars, and earnings before interest tax depreciation and amortisation rose likewise to $934 million. Free cash flow jumped 29% to a massive $572 million. Transurban has delivered more than 10% since 2008-09.

Free Trial

Proudly annoying those in power since 2000.

Sign up for a FREE 21-day trial to keep reading and get the best of Crikey straight to your inbox

By starting a free trial, you agree to accept Crikey’s terms and conditions


Leave a comment

8 thoughts on “Transurban’s (toll) road to riches

  1. Roger Clifton

    Tollways in somebody else’s city are Good Thing. For a start, the rest of us don’t have to pay for them. There is another reason …

    Consider the possibility that it is congestion which limits the growth of big cities. There comes a point when people decide that they’re spending too long in traffic and would rather live in a smaller – or newer – city. The big city in the meanwhile reaches its equilibrium capacity with its infrastructure of water supply, sewerage, parking, hospitals, traffic jams etc. Our population and industries can instead expand into cities with capacity left in their infrastructure.

    Of course the landowners in the big cities would much prefer that the rest of us pay to temporarily relieve the congestion with another billion-dollar freeway, so that more come in to pay them higher prices or rents, regardless of collapsing infrastructure. No thanks!

  2. AR

    It is utter madness that we continue to attempt to pretend to ‘relieve congestion’ in two cities bigger than the majority of european cities (including some capitals)and that 90% of our population squeezes into what seems determined to become a Judge Dredd megapolis from Newcastle to Werribee.

  3. DaveinPerth

    Western Australia –
    No toll roads.
    15% of our gas production is set aside for local use.

    What are you waiting for Australia ?

  4. Gavin Moodie

    Many of us on the east coast are waiting for the West to get economically responsible. In addition to its inefficient gas set aside and failure to make private road users pay for their environmentally destructive road use, the West’s shopping hours are too restrictive.

  5. Liamj

    Tollroads run as a tax dodging price gouging closed shop with Lib-Lab collaboration? But thats how most of Oz’s economy runs, why not roads too.

    @ Gavin Moodie – given that economics ignores some v.large uncosted impacts of LNG shipment, such as opportunity cost of the energy wasted in liquifaction, appeals on efficiency grounds are nonsense.

  6. Gavin Moodie

    Surely exporters of gas have to pay the full cost for it to be liquified.

  7. Liamj

    @ Gavin – I don’t believe so, but have no link/ref. I have been told that exporters pay royalties on volume exported & purchasers pay on volume delivered, NG consumed to power liquifaction (20-40%) is not priced. NG that boils off in transit is also uncosted, as are extraction & production leakages.

  8. Gavin Moodie

    This is is no more than argument that exporters should pay the full cost of the resources they export. Presumably that is widely agreed. I also believe they should pay a resource profits tax, which of course is contested by the exporters and their supporters.

    The issue is whether domestic consumers should also pay these full costs (and taxes) of the resources they consume. To exempt them from the full costs either explicitly or by a set aside amounts to a hidden subsidy. If a subsidy is to be paid I would prefer it to be explicit and open.

    But I don’t think a subsidy should be paid for domestic consumption of natural resources. It would make, for example, aluminium smeltin cheaper in Australia than it would be overseas where it may be done more efficiently. That would direct investment away from activities in which Australia is better at to activities in which Australia is less better at.

Share this article with a friend

Just fill out the fields below and we'll send your friend a link to this article along with a message from you.

Your details

Your friend's details