GLOOMY RESULTSFORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - Hvide Marine Inc., one of the world's leading providers of marine support and transportation services, is readying the investment community for gloomy first-quarter results.

In a statement on March 30, Hvide announced that earnings for the first quarter will be about 25 percent below analyst consensus estimates. They will be formally reported on May 6.

Hvide's statement attributed to the poor first-quarter performance to lower utilization rates in its offshore energy support business.

Domestically, the company suffered from a high number of dry-dockings and unscheduled service interruptions. On the international side, the utilization rates fell from the startup of new operations and because a large number of newly acquired vessels were out of service awaiting preparation for new term contracts.

The company said offshore and harbor towing, chemical transportation and petroleum product transport continue to perform in satisfactory fashion.



NEW YORK - MC Shipping Inc. said it expanded its fleet with the purchase of the gas carrier Halvern from Vitol, a European gas operator. The vessel is being chartered to Vitol for 18 months and is operating on the North Europe and Mediterranean trading lanes. Gus Morel, president, said, ''We are constantly evaluating purchase opportunities in the gas and container sectors.''

MC Shipping operates 19 vessels.



NEW ORLEANS - David ''Boysie'' Bollinger, a member of the board of commissioners of the Port of New Orleans and chairman of Bollinger Shipyards Inc., has received the 1997 C. Alvin Bertel Award.

Mr. Bollinger has been a member of the board since 1997. He also is chairman of the Governor's Maritime Advisory Task Force.

Bollinger Shipyards, a full-service marine construction and repair operation in Lockport, employs more than 1,500 people and has divisions throughout Louisiana.

The Bertel Award was established in 1967 in honor of C. Alvin Bertel Sr., a former commissioner. It is presented in recognition of outstanding contributions to the advancement of the New Orleans port area.