A 63% rise in freight traffic from Dover to Dunkirk and Calais helped Danish ferry operator DFDS boost pre-tax profits in the second quarter of the year.
The growth comes after it introduced two new ships on its route from the port to northern France and is the strongest expansion in the company’s history.
It helped pre-tax profits jump 39% to 443 million Danish Krone (£51m) compared to the same period last year.
Revenues were up 4% to DKK 3.6 billion (£411m). Its shipping division accounted for £282m of this, up from £268m.
Overall turnover is expected to increase by 6% this year, up from DKK 2.04bn (£236m) in 2015.
The introduction of the Cotes des Dunes and Cote de Flandres ferries on the Dover to Calais stretch means the business has 54 daily crossings on its two French routes.
In March, the company carried more than 110,000 vehicles on the Dover routes for the first time.
Wayne Bullen, freight sales director for the English Channel at DFDS, said: “We’ve invested heavily in improving capacity and enhancing both the booking and travel experience for our freight customers on the English Channel routes.
“Our new Dover to Calais ships allow us to offer higher frequency and more choice for our customers and we’re delighted to see the significant volume growth achieved as a result.
“We’re also seeing the benefits of our new and improved terminal at Dunkirk.
“Traffic flow has been improved to allow for faster discharge and loading at the port, which helps us better utilize the ships’ capacity and ensures we keep shipments on track for our customers.
“This is a strong performance across both routes that reflects the hard work and customer-focused approach of the whole team here.”