×

STEALTHGAS INC. Reports Fourth Quarter and Twelve Months Ended December 31, 2014 Financial and Operating Results

ATHENS, Greece, Feb. 26, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- STEALTHGAS INC. (Nasdaq:GASS), a ship-owning company primarily serving the liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) sector of the international shipping industry, announced today its unaudited financial and operating results for the fourth quarter and twelve months ended December 31, 2014.

Fourth quarter 2014 Results:

  • Revenues for the three months ended December 31, 2014 amounted to $35.0 million, an increase of $3.0 million, or 9.4%, compared to revenues of $32.0 million for the three months ended December 31, 2013, primarily due to the higher number of vessels in the 2014 period.
  • Voyage expenses and vessels' operating expenses for the three months ended December 31, 2014 were $3.5 million and $11.8 million, respectively, compared to $3.3 million and $10.0 million, respectively, for the three months ended December 31, 2013. The $0.2 million increase in voyage expenses was primarily due to the higher number of vessels under spot charters in the 2014 period. The $1.8 million increase in vessels' operating expenses was primarily the result of the increase in the number of vessels operated under time charters in the 2014 period, including three vessels that were added to the fleet and two vessels that came off bareboat charters. Other factors contributing to the increase in operating expenses were the operation of the older vessels in our fleet and the larger portion of our fleet trading in the Latin America/ Caribbean area, where operating costs are higher, compared to the 2013 period.
  • Drydocking Costs for the three months ended December 31, 2014 were nil as no vessels were drydocked during the period, compared to three vessels that were drydocked during the same period of last year at a cost of $0.7 million.
  • Depreciation for the three months ended December 31, 2014, was $8.8 million, a $0.7 million increase from $8.1 million for the same period of last year. This increase was due to the additional depreciation for five vessels joining the fleet from the fourth quarter of 2013 until the fourth quarter of 2014.
  • Included in the fourth quarter 2014 results are net losses from interest rate derivative instruments and foreign currency hedging arrangements of $0.8 million. Interest paid on interest rate swap arrangements amounted to $0.3 million, and losses from change in fair value of the same interest rate derivative instruments and foreign currency hedging arrangements amounted to $0.5 million. The Company also realized an impairment loss of $6.2 million on vessels planned to be scrapped within 2015.
  • As a result of the above, the Company had net loss for the three months ended December 31, 2014 of $1.2 million, compared to net income of $5.5 million for the three months ended December 31, 2013. The weighted average number of shares for the three months ended December 31, 2014 increased to 43.4 million compared to 32.1 million for the same period of last year, due to the offering of a total of 11.4 million shares in February, May and August of 2014. Loss per share for the three months ended December 31, 2014 amounted to $0.03 compared to earnings per share of $0.17 for the same period of last year.
  • Adjusted net income was $5.9 million or $0.14 per share for the three months ended December 31, 2014 compared to $5.3 million or $0.16 per share for the same period last year.
  • EBITDA for the three months ended December 31, 2014 amounted to $10.1 million. Reconciliations of Adjusted Net Income and EBITDA to Net Income and Adjusted EBITDA to Adjusted Net Income are set forth below.
  • An average of 46.4 vessels were owned by the Company during the three months ended December 31, 2014, compared to 42.0 vessels for the same period of 2013.
  • As of December 31, 2014, cash and cash equivalents amounted to $129.1 million and total debt to $325.5 million. During the twelve months ended December 31, 2014 debt repayments amounted to $75.3 million.

Twelve months 2014 Results:

  • Revenues for the twelve months ended December 31, 2014, amounted to $132.0 million, an increase of $10.5 million, or 8.6%, compared to revenues of $121.5 million for the twelve months ended December 31, 2013, primarily due to the higher number of vessels in our fleet in the 2014 period.
  • Voyage expenses and vessels' operating expenses for the twelve months ended December 31, 2014 were $14.1 million and $45.4 million, respectively, compared to $14.3 million and $36.5 million, respectively, for the twelve months ended December 31, 2013. The $8.7 million net increase in voyage and vessels' operating expenses was primarily due to the higher number of vessels that operated in the 2014 period and due to larger portion of the fleet now operating in the Latin America/Caribbean area, where operating costs are higher.
  • Drydocking Costs for the twelve months ended December 31, 2014 were $0.5 million as one of our vessels was drydocked during the period, compared to seven vessels that were drydocked during the same period of last year at a cost of $3.2 million.
  • Depreciation for the twelve months ended December 31, 2014, was $33.8 million, a $3.0 million increase from $30.8 million for the same period of last year. This increase was due to the higher number of vessels in our fleet in the 2014 period.
  • Interest and finance costs for the twelve months ended December 31, 2014 were $9.3 million compared to $8.2 million for the same period last year, an increase of 13.4%. The increase in interest and finance costs was mainly due to an increase in commitment costs relating to the financing arranged for the vessels that are currently under construction.
  • Included in the twelve months of 2014 results are net losses from interest rate derivative instruments and foreign currency hedging arrangements of $1.3 million. Interest paid on interest rate swap arrangements amounted to $1.9 million, or $0.05 per share and gains from change in fair value of the interest rate derivative instruments and foreign currency hedging arrangements amounted to $0.6 million. The Company also realized an impairment loss of $6.2 million on vessels planned to be scrapped within 2015.
  • As a result of the above, the Company had net income for the twelve months ended December 31, 2014 of $12.7 million, compared to net income of $21.2 million for the twelve months ended December 31, 2013. The weighted average number of shares for the twelve months ended December 31, 2014 increased to 39.3 million compared to 28.3 million for the same period of last year, due to the offerings of a total of 11.4 million shares in February, May and August of 2014. Earnings per share for the twelve months ended December 31, 2014 amounted to $0.32 compared to $0.75 for the same period of last year.
  • Adjusted net income was $19.0 million or $0.48 per share for the twelve months ended December 31, 2014 compared to $18.7 million or $0.66 per share for the same period last year.
  • EBITDA for the twelve months ended December 31, 2014 amounted to $57.2 million. Reconciliations of Adjusted Net Income and EBITDA to Net Income and Adjusted EBITDA to Adjusted Net Income are set forth below.

An average of 44.1 vessels were owned by the Company during the twelve months ended December 31, 2014, compared to 39.4 vessels for the same period of 2013. Overall for 2014 the time and bareboat charter coverage for the fleet was 85% and has already been contracted at 65% for 2015 and 30% for 2016.

Share Repurchase Program

Regarding the $10,000,000 share repurchase program announced in November 2014, the Company has up to date made purchases of 1.500.000 common shares for a total of $9 million. The Board of Directors has today approved the extension of the program for share buybacks up to an additional $20,000,000. Shares may be purchased in open market or privately negotiated transactions, which may include derivative transactions, at times and prices that are considered to be appropriate by the Company and the program may be discontinued at any time.

Fleet Update

During January 2015 the Company took delivery of the 3,500 cbm, LPG carrier, Eco Lucidity which went directly on a time charter as previously announced for a period of three months.

The Company also announced the conclusion of the following chartering arrangements:

  • A five-year bareboat charter for its 115,000 dwt, 2010 built, crude oil carrier, Spike, to a tanker operator until August 2020.
  • A five-month time charter for its 5,000 cbm, 2003 built, LPG carrier, Gas Prodigy, to a national energy company until September 2015.
  • The time charters for its 5,000 cbm newbuilding LPG carriers Eco Dream and Eco Green, which are scheduled to be delivered in 3rd quarter of 2015, have been extended from two to five years.

CEO Harry Vafias commented

Our revenues for the fourth quarter and the year were affected by the continued decline in charter rates that was driven primarily by falling oil prices. Although the charter market was sluggish we managed to improve our operating profitability significantly compared to the previous quarter and slightly over last year. Overall for 2014 our operating profitability was strong as our Adjusted EBITDA came in at $ 63.5 million increased in comparison with 2013 by $3.4 mm , however our net income was significantly lower, reflecting a $6.2 million impairment loss, as a result of our decision to seek to dispose of some of our oldest vessels in 2015.

Our Company follows a conservative chartering policy, with 85% of our fleet on period charters in 2014 and reduced exposure in the spot market. In these challenging charter markets we will continue to secure cash flow through period charters and to focus on controlling our costs. As of 2014 year end, we had approximately $220 million in contracted revenues, of which 72% are payable within the period 2015-2017. Our combined management fees and G&A expense was less than 7% of our 2014 revenues. We believe this compares very favourably with other public companies in the LPG and LNG shipping sectors, including those that rely on independent technical managers and those that manage their vessels in-house.

We are also focused on renewing and diversifying our fleet with modern eco vessels. We have 15 newbuildings, including four 22,000 cbm LPG carriers, under contract with scheduled deliveries of these vessels from this year until 2017. Our orderbook is of quality ships being mainly built in Japan and a few in Korea. Most importantly, in this charter market cycle, we are in a strong liquidity position which, together with our charter coverage, should enable us to meet our capital expenditure obligations, our existing debt service requirements and our working capital needs as our fleet expands. We have about $130 million in cash and cash equivalents at year end. Our strong balance sheet, with a ratio of debt to total assets of 34.4%, puts us in a position to address any investment need that might arise. In addition we are boosting our share repurchase program with another 20 million on top of the 10 million that was announced in November 2014.

Our current outlook for 2015 is for LPG charter rates to likely remain at similar levels. We believe, however, that our leading position among operators of small LPG carriers will over time enable us to capitalize on opportunities presented as the anticipated longer term growth in LPG trade is realized.

Last, but not least, we point out that our common shares are currently trading at about 50% discount to our NAV.

Conference Call details:

On February 26th 2015 at 11:00 am ET, the company's management will host a conference call to discuss the results and the company's operations and outlook.

Participants should dial into the call 10 minutes before the scheduled time using the following numbers: 1877 280 2296 (US Toll Free Dial In) or : 0800 279 5736 (UK Toll Free Dial In) Access Code: 7266095.

In case of any problems with the above numbers, please dial +1718 354 1157 (US Toll Dial In), or: +44(0)20 3140 8286 (Standard International Dial In). Access Code: 7266095.

A telephonic replay of the conference call will be available until March 5th, 2015 by dialing +1 347 366 9565 (US Local Dial In), +44 (0)20 3427 0598 (UK Local Dial In). Access Code: 7266095.

Slides and audio webcast:

There will also be a live and then archived webcast of the conference call, through the STEALTHGAS INC. website (www.stealthgas.com). Participants to the live webcast should register on the website approximately 10 minutes prior to the start of the webcast.

About STEALTHGAS INC.

StealthGas Inc. is a ship-owning company primarily serving the liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) sector of the international shipping industry. StealthGas Inc. currently has a fleet of 42 LPG carriers with a total capacity of 197,960 cubic meters (cbm), three M.R. product tankers and one Aframax oil tanker with a total capacity of 255,804 deadweight tons (dwt). The Company operates two more LPG carriers, the Gas Premiership and the Gas Cathar, under long term charters-in and has agreed to further acquire 15 newbuilding LPG carriers with expected deliveries ranging from 2015 to 2017. Giving effect to the delivery of these acquisitions and including the Gas Premiership and Gas Cathar, StealthGas Inc.'s LPG fleet will be composed of 59 LPG carriers with a total capacity of approximately 360,000 cubic meters (cbm). StealthGas Inc.'s shares are listed on the NASDAQ Global Select Market and trade under the symbol "GASS".

Forward-Looking Statements

Matters discussed in this release may constitute forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements reflect our current views with respect to future events and financial performance and may include statements concerning plans, objectives, goals, strategies, future events or performance, and underlying assumptions and other statements, which are other than statements of historical facts. The forward-looking statements in this release are based upon various assumptions, many of which are based, in turn, upon further assumptions, including without limitation, management's examination of historical operating trends, data contained in our records and other data available from third parties. Although STEALTHGAS INC. believes that these assumptions were reasonable when made, because these assumptions are inherently subject to significant uncertainties and contingencies which are difficult or impossible to predict and are beyond our control, STEALTHGAS INC. cannot assure you that it will achieve or accomplish these expectations, beliefs or projections. Important factors that, in our view, could cause actual results to differ materially from those discussed in the forward-looking statements include the strength of world economies and currencies, general market conditions, including changes in charter hire rates and vessel values, charter counterparty performance, changes in demand that may affect attitudes of time charterers to scheduled and unscheduled dry dockings, shipyard performance, changes in STEALTHGAS INC's operating expenses, including bunker prices, dry-docking and insurance costs, ability to obtain financing and comply with covenants in our financing arrangements, or actions taken by regulatory authorities, potential liability from pending or future litigation, domestic and international political conditions, potential disruption of shipping routes due to accidents and political events or acts by terrorists.

Risks and uncertainties are further described in reports filed by STEALTHGAS INC. with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Fleet List and Fleet Deployment

For information on our fleet and further information:

Visit our website at www.stealthgas.com.

Fleet Data:

The following key indicators highlight the Company's operating performance during the fourth quarters and twelve months ended December 31, 2013 and December 31, 2014.

FLEET DATA Q4 2013 Q4 2014 12M 2013 12M 2014
Average number of vessels (1) 42.0 46.4 39.4 44.1
Period end number of vessels in fleet 42 45 42 45
Total calendar days for fleet (2) 3,864 4,324 14,399 16,136
Total voyage days for fleet (3) 3,820 4,314 14,196 16,028
Fleet utilization (4) 98.9% 99.8% 98.6% 99.3%
Total charter days for fleet (5) 3,365 3,825 11,896 13,893
Total spot market days for fleet (6) 455 489 2,300 2,135
Fleet operational utilization (7) 94.9% 94.5% 92.3% 93.3%

1) Average number of vessels is the number of owned vessels that constituted our fleet for the relevant period, as measured by the sum of the number of days each vessel was a part of our fleet during the period divided by the number of calendar days in that period.

2) Total calendar days are the total days the vessels were in our possession for the relevant period including off-hire days associated with major repairs, drydockings or special or intermediate surveys.

3) Total voyage days for fleet reflect the total days the vessels were in our possession for the relevant period net of off-hire days associated with major repairs, drydockings or special or intermediate surveys.

4) Fleet utilization is the percentage of time that our vessels were available for revenue generating voyage days, and is determined by dividing voyage days by fleet calendar days for the relevant period.

5) Total charter days for fleet are the number of voyage days the vessels in our fleet operated on time or bareboat charters for the relevant period.

6) Total spot market charter days for fleet are the number of voyage days the vessels in our fleet operated on spot market charters for the relevant period.

7) Fleet operational utilization is the percentage of time that our vessels generated revenue, and is determined by dividing voyage days (excluding commercially idle days) by fleet calendar days for the relevant period.

Reconciliation of Adjusted Net Income, EBITDA, adjusted EBITDA and adjusted EPS:

Adjusted Net income represents Net Income before loss on derivatives excluding swap interest paid, impairment loss, share based compensation and unrealized exchange differences. EBITDA represents net income before interest, income tax expense, depreciation and amortization. Adjusted EBITDA represents EBITDA before impairment loss, share based compensation, loss on derivatives, excluding swap interest paid, and unrealized exchange difference. EBITDA, adjusted EBITDA, adjusted net income and adjusted EPS are not recognized measurements under U.S. GAAP. Our calculation of EBITDA, adjusted EBITDA, adjusted net income and adjusted EPS may not be comparable to that reported by other companies in the shipping or other industries. In evaluating Adjusted EBITDA and Adjusted Net Income, you should be aware that in the future we may incur expenses that are the same as or similar to some of the adjustments in this presentation.

EBITDA, adjusted EBITDA, adjusted net income and adjusted EPS are included herein because they are a basis, upon which we assess our financial performance. They allow us to present our performance from period to period on a comparable basis and provide additional information on fleet operational results. We also use EBITDA to assess our liquidity position and believe it represents useful information for investors regarding a company's ability to service and/or incur indebtedness.

(Expressed in United States Dollars,
except number of shares)
Fourth Quarter Ended December
31st,
Twelve Months Period
Ended December 31st,
2013 2014 2013 2014
Net Income/(loss) - Adjusted Net Income
Net income/ (loss) 5,532,096 (1,187,627) 21,217,193 12,685,826
Loss on derivatives 92,081 823,789 27,470 1,348,384
Less swap interest paid (445,127) (285,469) (2,811,593) (1,857,362)
Impairment loss -- 6,168,747 -- 6,168,747
Unrealized exchange loss 14,439 243,798 3,745 251,662
Share based compensation 73,758 139,097 292,628 357,967
Adjusted Net Income 5,267,247 5,902,335 18,729,443 18,955,224
Net income/(loss) – EBITDA
Net income/(loss) 5,532,096 (1,187,627) 21,217,193 12,685,826
Plus interest and finance costs incl. swap interest paid 2,701,978 2,551,633 11,001,068 11,171,901
Less interest income (158,154) (113,594) (361,820) (456,924)
Plus depreciation 8,090,654 8,826,492 30,761,673 33,811,607
EBITDA 16,166,574 10,076,904 62,618,114 57,212,410
Adjusted Net income -Adjusted EBITDA
Adjusted Net Income 5,267,247 5,902,335 18,729,443 18,955,224
Plus interest and finance costs incl. swap interest paid 2,701,978 2,551,633 11,001,068 11,171,901
Less interest income (158,154) (113,594) (361,820) (456,924)
Plus depreciation 8,090,654 8,826,492 30,761,673 33,811,607
Adjusted EBITDA 15,901,725 17,166,866 60,130,364 63,481,808
EPS - Adjusted EPS
Net income/(loss) 5,532,096 (1,187,627) 21,217,193 12,685,826
Adjusted net income 5,267,247 5,902,335 18,729,443 18,955,224
Weighted average number of shares 32,052,568 43,389,533 28,271,746 39,305,644
EPS - Basic and Diluted 0.17 (0.03) 0.75 0.32
Adjusted EPS 0.16 0.14 0.66 0.48
StealthGas Inc.
Unaudited Consolidated Statements of Operations
(Expressed in United States Dollars, except number of shares)
Fourth Quarter Ended
December 31st,
Twelve Months Period Ended
December 31st,
2013 2014 2013 2014
Revenues
Revenues 29,559,421 32,518,012 111,667,565 122,158,892
Revenues - related party 2,473,109 2,473,109 9,814,000 9,814,000
Total revenues 32,032,530 34,991,121 121,481,565 131,972,892
Expenses
Voyage expenses 2,925,721 3,081,595 12,819,866 12,474,090
Voyage expenses - related party 393,113 422,499 1,482,764 1,613,421
Charter hire expenses -- 325,758 -- 325,758
Amortization of deferred gain on sale and leaseback of vessels -- (4,954) -- (4,954)
Vessels' operating expenses 8,991,987 10,721,476 32,439,404 41,335,984
Vessels' operating expenses - related party 1,017,833 1,038,008 4,084,149 4,099,352
Drydocking costs 703,637 -- 3,160,251 465,681
Management fees - related party 1,304,560 1,506,330 4,807,010 5,501,675
General and administrative expenses 923,650 964,712 2,816,397 3,150,929
Depreciation 8,090,654 8,826,492 30,761,673 33,811,607
Impairment loss -- 6,168,747 -- 6,168,747
Total expenses 24,351,155 33,050,663 92,371,514 108,942,290
Income from operations 7,681,375 1,940,458 29,110,051 23,030,602
Other (expenses)/income
Interest and finance costs (2,256,851) (2,266,164) (8,189,475) (9,314,539)
Loss on derivatives (92,081) (823,789) (27,470) (1,348,384)
Interest income 158,154 113,594 361,820 456,924
Foreign exchange gain/(loss) 41,499 (151,726) (37,733) (138,777)
Other expenses, net (2,149,279) (3,128,085) (7,892,858) (10,344,776)
Net income/(loss) 5,532,096 (1,187,627) 21,217,193 12,685,826
Earnings per share
- Basic 0.17 (0.03) 0.75 0.32
- Diluted 0.17 (0.03) 0.75 0.32
Weighted average number of shares
-Basic 32,052,568 43,389,533 28,271,746 39,305,644
-Diluted 32,052,568 43,389,533 28,271,746 39,305,644
StealthGas Inc.
Unaudited Consolidated Balance Sheets
(Expressed in United States Dollars)
December 31,
2013 2014
Assets
Current assets
Cash and cash equivalents 86,218,517 129,114,803
Receivables from related party 104,476 104,476
Trade and other receivables 4,726,758 3,211,563
Claims receivable 136,867 70,273
Inventories 2,461,093 2,958,666
Advances and prepayments 715,444 1,386,003
Restricted cash 3,521,902 2,896,677
Total current assets 97,885,057 139,742,461
Non current assets
Advances for vessels under construction and acquisitions 70,577,435 88,965,085
Vessels, net 677,022,902 711,352,845
Other receivables 582,765 228,494
Restricted cash 2,300,000 2,500,000
Deferred finance charges, net of accumulated
amortization of $2,212,091 and $2,868,432 2,616,584 3,090,918
Total non current assets 753,099,686 806,137,342
Total assets 850,984,743 945,879,803
Liabilities and Stockholders' Equity
Current liabilities
Payable to related party 5,941,043 4,941,896
Trade accounts payable 7,220,862 8,843,593
Accrued liabilities 2,880,377 3,903,027
Deferred income 5,487,585 6,892,328
Fair value of derivatives 277,212 583,368
Current portion of long-term debt 41,263,165 42,614,213
Total current liabilities 63,070,244 67,778,425
Non current liabilities
Fair value of derivatives 2,955,755 1,873,295
Deferred gain on sale and leaseback of vessels -- 775,741
Deferred income 758,844 172,428
Long-term debt 311,605,457 282,889,640
Total non current liabilities 315,320,056 285,711,104
Total liabilities 378,390,300 353,489,529
Commitments and contingencies -- --
Stockholders' equity
Capital stock 321,273 428,897
Additional paid-in capital 385,088,821 492,334,751
Retained earnings 87,233,820 99,919,646
Accumulated other comprehensive loss (49,471) (293,020)
Total stockholders' equity 472,594,443 592,390,274
Total liabilities and stockholders' equity 850,984,743 945,879,803
StealthGas Inc.
Unaudited Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows
(Expressed in United States Dollars)
December 31,
2013 2014
Cash flows from operating activities
Net income for the year 21,217,193 12,685,826
Adjustments to reconcile net income to net cash
provided by operating activities:
Depreciation 30,761,673 33,811,607
Amortization and write-off of deferred finance charges 425,933 656,341
Amortization of deferred gain on sale and leaseback of vessels -- (4,954)
Unrealized exchange differences 3,745 251,662
Share based compensation 292,628 357,967
Change in fair value of derivatives (2,784,123) (1,019,853)
Impairment loss -- 6,168,747
Changes in operating assets and liabilities:
(Increase)/decrease in
Trade and other receivables (2,055,817) 1,869,466
Claims receivable (1,905,152) (317,570)
Inventories 691,314 (497,573)
Advances and prepayments (280,218) (670,559)
Increase/(decrease) in
Balances with related parties (1,452,332) (999,147)
Trade accounts payable 2,045,571 1,104,798
Accrued liabilities 25,207 1,022,650
Other non current liabilities 536,074 (586,416)
Deferred income 1,605,679 1,404,743
Net cash provided by operating activities 49,127,375 55,237,735
Cash flows from investing activities
Insurance proceeds 1,801,120 384,164
Vessels' acquisitions and advances for vessels under construction (124,406,294) (129,891,982)
Proceeds from sale of vessels, net -- 27,929,931
Net proceeds related to cancellation of vessels' acquisitions 10,044,799
Decrease in restricted cash account 2,818,753 425,225
Net cash used in investing activities (119,786,421) (91,107,863)
Cash flows from financing activities
Net proceeds from common stock issuance 109,119,029 112,302,678
Stock repurchase -- (4,789,158)
Deferred finance charges paid (1,747,031) (1,130,675)
Customer deposits paid (280,000) --
Loan repayments (37,696,190) (75,268,462)
Proceeds from long-term debt 45,212,500 47,903,693
Net cash provided by financing activities 114,608,308 79,018,076
Effect of exchange rate changes on cash (3,745) (251,662)
Net increase in cash and cash equivalents 43,945,517 42,896,286
Cash and cash equivalents at beginning of year 42,273,000 86,218,517
Cash and cash equivalents at end of year 86,218,517 129,114,803

CONTACT: Company Contact: Harry Vafias Chief Executive Officer STEALTHGAS INC. 011-30-210-6250-001 E-mail: info@stealthgas.com

Source:StealthGas Inc.