New Orleans-area’s top public companies

New Orleans-area’s top public companies

Terry O’Connor

Sixteen of the 22 publicly traded New Orleans-area businesses made money in 2003 – a complete reversal of the year before when 15 of 22 businesses lost money.

The strong performance overall befitted strong market conditions that included 40-year lows in interest rates, an upsurge in the general market index based on upbeat company earnings reports, the virtual absence of inflation and a job market tilted in favor of employers.

Entergy, the lone Fortune 500 company headquartered in New Orleans, remains the top performer by far in the business sector. Its revenues totaled $9.2 billion in 2003, up 10.8 percent from $8.3 billion in 2002. Net income hit $950.5 million, up 52.5 percent from $623.1 million in 2002.

Newer concerns such as Energy Partners Ltd., which was created in New Orleans in 1998, and Covington-based SCP Pool, which earned more than $1 billion last year for the first time in its 10 years of cooling people off, continued to blossom as major business powers. Other top performers include Gulf Island Fabrication, McDermott International and Hornbeck Offshore Services, which went public this year.

Revenue declines came in some surprising places headed by familiar faces, including McMoRan Exploration, Orthodontic Centers of America, Stewart Enterprises and GS Financial Corp. At least one company – Trico Marine Services of Houma – is teetering on the verge of bankruptcy.

The details are contained in the 16-page CityBusiness report on the Top Public Companies in the New Orleans area beginning on page 30.

Copyright 2004 Dolan Media Newswires

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