Jennifer Oettel / Kristina Heinrichs / Veronika Bahnmann
Phone: +49 611 36 07121
Company Reports Record First Quarter Earnings with Strong EPS Growth of 67%
The Company’s Newest and Most Incredible Ship, Norwegian Bliss, Joins the Fleet
New $1 Billion, Three-year Share Repurchase Program Authorization Announced
Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. (NYSE: NCLH) (together with NCL Corporation Ltd., “Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings”, “Norwegian” or the “Company”) today reported financial results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2018, as well as provided guidance for the second quarter and full year 2018.
“The year is off to an impressive start with yet another record quarter of earnings, which exceeded expectations," said Frank Del Rio, president and chief executive officer of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. “The 2018 Wave Season was stellar and has further strengthened our overall future booked position with load factor and pricing continuing to be well ahead of prior year for the remaining quarters of 2018 and throughout 2019.”
First Quarter 2018 Results
GAAP net income was $103.2 million or EPS of $0.45 compared to $61.9 million or $0.27 in the prior year. The Company generated Adjusted Net Income of $137.8 million or Adjusted EPS of $0.60 compared to $91.2 million or $0.40 in the prior year.
Revenue increased 12.4% to $1.3 billion compared to $1.2 billion in 2017. Net Revenue increased 13.1% to $1.0 billion compared to $0.9 billion in 2017. These increases were primarily attributed to strong organic pricing growth across all core markets along with an increase in Capacity Days due to the addition of Norwegian Joy to the fleet. Gross Yield increased 1.4% and Net Yield increased 1.0% on a Constant Currency basis and 2.0% on an as reported basis.
Total cruise operating expense increased 6.7% in 2018 compared to 2017 primarily due to an increase in Capacity Days. Gross Cruise Costs per Capacity Day decreased 1.5% due to a decrease in maintenance and repairs including Dry-dock expenses partially offset by an increase in marketing, general and administrative expenses. Adjusted Net Cruise Cost Excluding Fuel per Capacity Day decreased 2.7% on a Constant Currency basis and 2.1% on an as reported basis.
Fuel price per metric ton, net of hedges decreased to $448 from $453 in 2017. The Company reported fuel expense of $93.4 million in the period.
Interest expense, net was $59.7 million in 2018 compared to $53.0 million in 2017. The increase in interest expense reflects additional debt in connection with the delivery of Norwegian Joy in April 2017, Project Leonardo financing, as well as higher interest rates due to an increase in LIBOR, partially offset by the benefit from the full redemption in October 2017 of our 4.625% Senior Notes due 2020.
Other income (expense), net was an expense of $1.7 million in 2018 compared to an expense of $2.8 million in 2017. In 2018, the expense was primarily related to losses on foreign currency exchange. In 2017, the expense was primarily related to losses on foreign currency exchange and unrealized and realized losses on derivatives.
“The strong global demand for our portfolio of brands which we experienced during 2017 has continued, as demonstrated by the successful, record-breaking launch of Norwegian Bliss, which entered the fleet as the best booked Norwegian Cruise Line newbuild in the history of our company,” said Mark Kempa, interim chief financial officer of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. “While our primary focus continues to be to delever to the low 3 times by year-end 2018, our recently announced $1 billion share repurchase program reflects our ongoing confidence in our financial position and the long-term strength of our business as well as our commitment to provide meaningful capital returns to our shareholders.”
2018 Guidance and Sensitivities
In addition to announcing the results for the first quarter, the Company also provided guidance for the second quarter and full year 2018, along with accompanying sensitivities. The Company does not provide guidance on a GAAP basis because the Company is unable to predict, with reasonable certainty, the future movement of foreign exchange rates or the future impact of certain gains and charges. These items are uncertain and will depend on several factors, including industry conditions, and could be material to the Company's results computed in accordance with GAAP. The Company has not provided reconciliations between the Company's 2018 guidance and the most directly comparable GAAP measures because it would be too difficult to prepare a reliable U.S. GAAP quantitative reconciliation without unreasonable effort.
Second Quarter 2018
Full Year 2018
Adjusted Net Cruise Cost
7.5% to 8.0%
0.5% to 1.5%
Flat to 1.0%
$4.55 to $4.70
Adjusted Depreciation and Amortization (1)
Approx. $135 million
Approx. $552 million
AdjustedInterest Expense, net
Approx. $70 million
Approx. $274 million
Effect on Adjusted EPS of a
Effect on Adjusted EPS of a 1% change in Adjusted Net Cruise Cost Excluding Fuel per Capacity Day (2)
(1) Excludes $6.2 million and $24.9 million of amortization of intangible assets related to the Acquisition of Prestige in the second quarter and full year 2018, respectively.
(2) Based on midpoint of guidance.
(3) For the remaining quarters of 2018.
The following reflects the Company’s expectations regarding fuel consumption and pricing, along with accompanying sensitivities.
Second Quarter 2018
Full Year 2018
Fuel consumption in metric tons
Fuel price per metric ton, net of hedges
Effect on Adjusted EPS of a 10% change
(1) For the remaining quarters of 2018.
As of March 31, 2018, the Company had hedged approximately 64%, 48%, and 26% of its total projected metric tons of fuel consumption for the remainder of 2018, 2019, and 2020, respectively. The following table provides amounts hedged and price per barrel of heavy fuel oil (“HFO”) and marine gas oil (“MGO”) which are hedged utilizing U.S. Gulf Coast 3% (“USGC”) and Brent, respectively.
Remainder of 2018
% of HFO Consumption Hedged
Average USGC Price / Barrel
% of MGO Consumption Hedged
Average Brent Price / Barrel
The following reflects the foreign currency exchange rates the Company used in its second quarter and full year 2018 guidance.
Current Guidance - May
Prior Guidance – February
Future capital commitments consist of contracted commitments, including ship construction contracts, and future expected capital expenditures necessary for operations as well as our ship refurbishment projects. As of March 31, 2018, anticipated capital expenditures were $1.4 billion for the remainder of 2018, $1.3 billion and $0.9 billion for the years ending December 31, 2019 and 2020, respectively. We have export credit financing in place for the expenditures related to ship construction contracts of $0.7 billion for the remainder of 2018, $0.6 billion and $0.5 billion for the years ended December 31, 2019 and 2020, respectively.
Company Updates and Other Business Highlights
$1 Billion, Three-year Share Repurchase Program Authorized
In April 2018, the Company's Board of Directors (the "Board") authorized a three-year, $1 billion share repurchase program. This authorization reflects the Company's ongoing confidence in its financial strength and the long-term outlook of its business. The Company may repurchase its ordinary shares from time to time, in amounts, at prices and at such times as it deems appropriate, subject to market conditions and other considerations. The Company may make repurchases in the open market, in privately negotiated transactions, in accelerated repurchase programs or in structured share repurchase programs, and any repurchases may be made pursuant to Rule 10b5-1 plans. The program will be conducted in compliance with applicable legal requirements and will be subject to market conditions and other factors.
Company Announces New Dedicated Terminal at PortMiami
Recently, the Company unveiled the design of the new and dedicated Norwegian Cruise Line terminal at PortMiami. The new terminal will set the standard for passenger comfort and experience and will become an iconic building on Miami's waterfront, and once complete, it will be the new "pearl" of Miami, redefining the landscape of the city's skyline. At nearly 166,500 square feet, the debuting terminal will accommodate ships of up to 5,000 passengers. On April 26, the Company celebrated the groundbreaking of the terminal, marking the start of construction. The project is scheduled for completion by fall of 2019, as Norwegian Encore, the newest ship of the Breakaway Plus Class, makes her debut in Miami with seasonal cruises to the Caribbean.
Delivery of Norwegian Bliss
On April 19, Norwegian Cruise Line took delivery of the 168,028-gross-ton Norwegian Bliss from Meyer Werft during a ceremony in Bremerhaven, Germany, marking the conclusion of an 18-month building period. Norwegian Bliss, the third ship in the line's Breakaway Plus Class Ships, the most successful class in the Company's history, is the first cruise ship specifically designed with features and amenities for the ultimate Alaska cruising experience. Before cruising to Southampton, England to begin her transatlantic journey on April 21, Norwegian Bliss will showcase all she has to offer to her first guests during a two-day European inaugural preview cruise. Upon her arrival to the U.S. on May 3, the festivities for her U.S. inaugural tour will commence with two-night preview events in New York, Miami, and Los Angeles, and will conclude with a grand christening ceremony and sailing from her first homeport at Pier 66 in Seattle, Washington and will then embark on her first seven-day voyage to Alaska.
Company Appoints Pamela Thomas-Graham to Its Board of Directors
On April 24, the Company announced it expanded its Board with the appointment of Ms. Pamela Thomas-Graham as a new independent member, effective April 23, 2018. Ms. Thomas-Graham’s appointment increased the Board from nine to 10 members, seven of whom are independent. She will also serve as a member of the Company’s Audit Committee.
Regent Seven Seas Mariner Revitalization
In the final phase of Regent Seven Seas Cruises' $125 million refurbishment program, the Company completed its bow-to-stern upgrade of Seven Seas Mariner, elevating the ship to the level of elegance set by Seven Seas Explorer® and providing a consistent look and feel to the entire fleet. Seven Seas Mariner completed a 20-day Dry-dock at Chantier Naval de Marseille, and has re-emerged with dramatic new culinary experiences, elegant new suite designs, and completely renewed elegant guest spaces.
Regent Seven Seas Cruises Cut Steel for Seven Seas Splendor and Reveals Ship Details
Regent Seven Seas Cruises cut the first plate of steel for Seven Seas Splendor, marking a significant construction milestone for the ship that will elevate the standard for all-inclusive luxury experiences. The new 750-guest ship will join the fleet in early 2020, in pursuit of the ultimate achievement - perfection. The inaugural season for the all-suite, all-balcony ship went on sale in early April. Seven Seas Splendor will join Regent's most luxurious fleet in the world, comprising Seven Seas Explorer, Seven Seas Voyager, Seven Seas Mariner, and Seven Seas Navigator. Details for Seven Seas Splendor's awe-inspiring public spaces and ten sophisticated suite categories for debut in 2020 have also been revealed. The cruise line is building upon the elegance of its existing ships with lush designs and distinguishing upgrades that will captivate travelers and exceed their expectations, as they indulge in all-inclusive luxury experiences across the globe.
About Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd.
Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. (NYSE:NCLH) is a leading global cruise company which operates the Norwegian Cruise Line, Oceania Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises brands.
With a combined fleet of 26 ships with approximately 54,400 berths, these brands offer itineraries to more than 450 destinations worldwide. The Company will introduce six additional ships through 2025, and has an option to introduce two additional ships for delivery in 2026 and 2027.
Norwegian Cruise Line is the innovator in cruise travel with a 51-year history of breaking the boundaries of traditional cruising. Most notably, Norwegian revolutionized the cruise industry by offering guests the freedom and flexibility to design their ideal cruise vacation on their schedule with no set dining times, a variety of entertainment options and no formal dress codes. Today, Norwegian invites guests to enjoy a relaxed, resort- style cruise vacation on some of the newest and most contemporary ships at sea with a wide variety of accommodations options, including The Haven by Norwegian®, a luxury enclave with suites, private pool and dining, concierge service and personal butlers. Norwegian Cruise Line sails around the globe, offering guests the freedom and flexibility to explore the world on their own time and experience up to 27 dining options, award-winning entertainment, superior guest service and more across all of the brand's 16 ships.
Celebrating its 15th anniversary in 2018, Oceania Cruises is the world’s leading culinary- and destination-focused cruise line. The line’s six intimate and luxurious ships which carry only 684 or 1,250 guests offer an unrivaled vacation experience featuring the finest cuisine at sea and destination-rich itineraries that span the globe. Expertly crafted voyages aboard designer-inspired, intimate ships call on more than 450 ports across Europe, Alaska, Asia, Africa, Australia, New Zealand, New England-Canada, Bermuda, the Caribbean, Panama Canal, Tahiti and the South Pacific and epic Around The World Voyages that range from 180 to 200 days.
Regent Seven Seas Cruises offers the industry's most inclusive luxury experience aboard its all-suite fleet. Seven Seas Mariner's 2018 dry-dock refurbishment concluded the line's $125 million refurbishment program to elevate the elegance of the whole fleet to the standard set by Seven Seas Explorer. In early 2020, Regent will perfect luxury with the launch of Seven Seas Splendor. A voyage with Regent Seven Seas Cruises includes all-suite accommodations, round-trip air, highly personalized service, exquisite cuisine, fine wines and spirits, unlimited internet access, sightseeing excursions in every port, gratuities, ground transfers and a pre-cruise hotel package for guests staying in concierge-level suites and higher.
Cautionary Statement Concerning Forward-Looking Statements
Certain statements in this release constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of the U.S. federal securities laws intended to qualify for the safe harbor from liability established by the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. All statements other than statements of historical facts contained in this release, including, without limitation, those regarding our business strategy, financial position, results of operations, plans, prospects and objectives of management for future operations (including expected fleet additions, development plans, share repurchase authorization objectives relating to our activities and expected performance in new markets), are forward-looking statements. Many, but not all, of these statements can be found by looking for words like "expect," "anticipate," "goal," "project," "plan," "believe," "seek," "will," "may," "forecast," "estimate," "intend," "future," and similar words. Forward-looking statements do not guarantee future performance and may involve risks, uncertainties and other factors which could cause our actual results, performance or achievements to differ materially from the future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied in those forward-looking statements. Examples of these risks, uncertainties and other factors include, but are not limited to the impact of: adverse events impacting the security of travel, such as terrorist acts, armed conflict and threats thereof, acts of piracy, and other international events; adverse incidents involving cruise ships; adverse general economic and related factors, such as fluctuating or increasing levels of unemployment, underemployment and the volatility of fuel prices, declines in the securities and real estate markets, and perceptions of these conditions that decrease the level of disposable income of consumers or consumer confidence; the spread of epidemics and viral outbreaks; our expansion into and investments in new markets; the risks and increased costs associated with operating internationally; breaches in data security or other disturbances to our information technology and other networks; changes in fuel prices and/or other cruise operating costs; fluctuations in foreign currency exchange rates; overcapacity in key markets or globally; the unavailability of attractive port destinations; our indebtedness and restrictions in the agreements governing our indebtedness that limit our flexibility in operating our business; the significant portion of our assets pledged as collateral under our existing debt agreements and the ability of our creditors to accelerate the repayment of our indebtedness; volatility and disruptions in the global credit and financial markets, which may adversely affect our ability to borrow and could increase our counterparty credit risks, including those under our credit facilities, derivatives, contingent obligations, insurance contracts and new ship progress payment guarantees; our inability to recruit or retain qualified personnel or the loss of key personnel; delays in our shipbuilding program and ship repairs, maintenance and refurbishments; our reliance on third parties to provide hotel management services to certain ships and certain other services; future increases in the price of, or major changes or reduction in, commercial airline services; amendments to our collective bargaining agreements for crew members and other employee relation issues; our inability to obtain adequate insurance coverage; future changes relating to how external distribution channels sell and market our cruises; pending or threatened litigation, investigations and enforcement actions; our ability to keep pace with developments in technology; seasonal variations in passenger fare rates and occupancy levels at different times of the year; changes involving the tax and environmental regulatory regimes in which we operate; and other factors set forth under "Risk Factors" in our most recently filed Annual Report on Form 10-K and subsequent filings by the Company with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The above examples are not exhaustive and new risks emerge from time to time. Such forward-looking statements are based on our current beliefs, assumptions, expectations, estimates and projections regarding our present and future business strategies and the environment in which we expect to operate in the future. These forward-looking statements speak only as of the date made. We expressly disclaim any obligation or undertaking to release publicly any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statement contained herein to reflect any change in our expectations with regard thereto or any change of events, conditions or circumstances on which any such statement was based, except as required by law.
Jennifer Oettel / Kristina Heinrichs / Veronika Bahnmann
Phone: +49 611 36 07121
Corporate Mailing Address
Wiesbaden, Continental Europe Office
NCL (Bahamas) Ltd.
Continental Europe Branch
Kreuzberger Ring 68
65205 Wiesbaden, Germany