For Immediate Release: July 22, 2015
Contacts: Office of the Governor: Brian Coy, (804) 225-4260, | Port of Virginia: Joseph D. Harris, (757) 683-2137, (757) 675-8087,

Governor McAuliffe Announces The Port of Virginia’s Return to Profitability

~Port experiences $31.5 million operating revenue swing, sets new record for volume~


Governor Terry McAuliffe today announced that The Port of Virginia’s preliminary reports for fiscal year 2015 indicate that it will post its first yearly operating profit since 2008. The Port is forecast to turn a $16.1 million profit, which is a $31.5 million improvement in operating income compared with the prior fiscal year. 

Speaking at an event at the Port of Virginia in Norfolk, the Governor also announced that the Port continued its record-setting cargo-handling pace in fiscal year 2015, handling more than 2.5 million TEUs in the twelve months that closed June 30, and eclipsing the record set last fiscal year by 8.9 percent. 

“When I took office I knew that growing and diversifying Virginia’s economy would require making the Port of Virginia the profitable gateway to the world that it can be,” said Governor McAuliffe. “I am proud of the work my Administration, Port officials and so many others have done to achieve this remarkable turnaround and I look forward to the central role this enormous asset will play as we work together to build a new Virginia economy.” 

“The Governor made it very clear last year that The Port of Virginia was going to change its course and become a sustainable operation, and it has,” said Aubrey L. Layne, Virginia Secretary of Transportation. “Now the focus is on continuing the change and pushing forward to make ours the leading port on the East Coast, and we are already off to a great start.” 

The port closed fiscal 2015 with strong June TEU volumes, having handled 213,517 TEUs, which is a 14.5 percent improvement when compared with the same month last year. The month yielded growth across the board for the port:

  • truck containers, up 20.5%
  • vehicle units, up 102%
  • rail containers, up 7.4%
  • ship calls, up 11.7% 

“Multiple factors are behind these figures, namely hard work, across the board, by the port team, our labor partners, industry partners and stakeholders; the success of this port is a collaborative effort,” said John F. Reinhart, CEO and executive director of the Virginia Port Authority (VPA). “We’re seeing improvements gained from our ongoing effort to improve operational efficiency, and our strategic investments in equipment, in technology and in people are paying off. There is still much to do, and we are going to forge ahead with our plan to reinvest in infrastructure in order to compete now and in the future.” 

Fiscal 2015 also included the following accomplishments: 

  • Re-opening of Portsmouth Marine Terminal
  • The addition of 1,000 chassis to HRCP II
  • Purchase of nearly 100 vehicles used in the movement of cargo
  • Implementation of new terminal operations software
  • The signing of a cost-sharing agreement with the Army Corps of Engineers to evaluate the benefits of two critical dredging projects: the deepening of the Norfolk Harbor and Southern Branch of the Elizabeth River
  • Receipt of a $15 million Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant to create a new intermodal gate complex at Norfolk International Terminals
  • The completion of a bond sale to reduce debt costs, earning Aa3 and A+ bond ratings from Moody’s and S&P, respectively
  • The passage of a $489.7 million budget that includes $135 million allocated for capital expenditures to alleviate congestion and position the port for future growth 

“The fiscal year’s successes could not have been possible without the vision and guidance of our board of commissioners and support of the Governor and Secretary of Transportation,” Reinhart said. “Their dedication to our mission and recognition that the port is a driving economic engine in the Commonwealth enabled us to make the strategic and tactical moves necessary to start addressing our current issues with congestion as well plan for the future of the port. We still have a long way to go to address our challenges. However, the plan has now been laid out. It’s up to us to continue to work together with our partners, our customers and our colleagues to ensure the vision becomes a reality.” 

Fiscal 2015, percent change vs. fiscal 2014: 

  • Total TEUs:                             2,510,099        +8.9%
  • Total Containers:                     1,442,645        +9.3%
  • Total Rail Containers:             465,898           +4.2%
  • Total Barge Containers:          14,114             +47.1%
  • Total Truck Containers:          921,241           +12%

The Virginia Port Authority (VPA) is a political subdivision of the Commonwealth of Virginia. The VPA owns and through its private operating subsidiary, Virginia International Terminals, LLC (VIT), operates four general cargo facilities Norfolk International Terminals, Portsmouth Marine Terminal, Newport News Marine Terminal and the Virginia Inland Port in Warren County. The VPA leases Virginia International Gateway and the Port of Richmond. In fiscal 2013, The Port of Virginia provided more than 374,000 jobs and generated $60.3 billion in total economic impact throughout the Commonwealth.