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|Carnival Corporation & plc Reports Full Details of First Quarter Earnings|
MIAMI, March 22, 2011 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- Carnival Corporation & plc (NYSE/LSE: CCL; NYSE: CUK) reported net income of $152 million, or $0.19 diluted EPS, on revenues of $3.4 billion for its first quarter ended February 28, 2011. Net income for the first quarter 2010 was $175 million, or $0.22 diluted EPS, on revenues of $3.2 billion. The first quarter 2010 included the favorable impact of $0.10 per share from unusual items.
Carnival Corporation & plc Chairman and CEO Micky Arison indicated that earnings in the first quarter 2011 were at the high end of the company's December guidance due to lower than expected unit costs which offset higher than expected fuel prices.
Commenting on the first quarter, Arison said, "Net revenue yields increased 2 percent (constant dollars) driven by a significant improvement in ticket prices for our European brands. We remained focused on managing costs and reducing fuel consumption. All of which more than offset rising fuel prices during the quarter."
Key metrics for the first quarter 2011 compared to the prior year were as follows:
During the first quarter, the company announced an increase in its regular quarterly dividend to $0.25 per share from $0.10 per share, signifying continuing confidence in the company's future earnings potential.
Since the start of the calendar year, booking volumes and prices for the remaining three quarters are running higher than the prior year. At this point in time, cumulative advance bookings for the remainder of the year are at higher prices with slightly lower occupancies versus last year.
Arison noted, "Despite the uncertain world events that have unfolded during our peak booking period, we have experienced a solid wave season. Ticket prices for the peak summer season remain particularly strong. The convenience and affordability of a cruise vacation continues to gain recognition as consumers discover the unrivaled experience cruising offers. As a result, long-term fundamentals for our business remain attractive in an environment where consumers increasingly value the importance of taking their holidays."
The company expects full year net revenue yields, on a constant dollar basis, to increase 2.5 to 3.5 percent compared to 3 to 4 percent in its December guidance. As previously announced, the change in yield guidance of approximately $44 million, or $0.05 per share, results from the itinerary changes in the Middle East and North Africa necessitated by the political unrest in that region. The company expects net revenue yields on a current dollar basis to increase 4.5 to 5.5 percent for the full year 2011 compared to 2010.
The company expects net cruise costs, excluding fuel, per ALBD for the full year 2011 to be flat to up slightly on a constant dollar basis compared to flat in its December guidance due to increasing inflation expectations. Slightly lower expectations in other cost categories are expected to offset the slightly higher net cruise costs guidance.
As previously announced, fuel prices have increased significantly since we provided December guidance. Based on current spot prices for fuel, fuel costs are now expected to increase $355 million for the full year 2011 compared to December guidance, costing an additional $0.45 per share. However, the weakening of the U.S. dollar since December guidance is expected to benefit earnings by $75 million, or $0.09 per share.
Taking all the above factors into consideration, the company now forecasts full year 2011 fully diluted earnings per share to be in the range of $2.55 to $2.65, compared to its December guidance range of $2.90 to $3.10 and full year 2010 of $2.47. This guidance is slightly better than the update provided on March 11, due to the change in spot prices for fuel and currency.
Second Quarter 2011
Second quarter constant dollar net revenue yields are expected to increase in the 1.5 to 2.5 percent range (4.5 to 5.5 percent on a current dollar basis) compared to the prior year. Net cruise costs excluding fuel per ALBD for the second quarter are expected to be 2.0 to 3.0 percent higher on a constant dollar basis. Fuel costs for the second quarter are expected to increase $140 million compared to the prior year, costing an additional $0.18 per share.
Based on current fuel prices and currency exchange rates, the company expects fully diluted earnings for the second quarter 2011 to be in the range of $0.20 to $0.24 per share, down from $0.32 per share in 2010 due to the drag on earnings from the higher fuel prices.
During the second quarter two new ships will debut in Europe, AIDA Cruises' 2,194-passenger AIDAsol and Carnival Cruise Lines' 3,690-passenger Carnival Magic, furthering the company's strategy to expand its global presence.
Selected Key Forecast Metrics
The company has scheduled a conference call with analysts at 10:00 a.m. EDT (2:00 p.m. GMT) today to discuss its 2011 first quarter earnings. This call can be listened to live, and additional information can be obtained, via Carnival Corporation & plc's Web site at http://www.carnivalcorp.com/ and http://www.carnivalplc.com/.
Carnival Corporation & plc is the largest cruise vacation group in the world, with a portfolio of cruise brands in North America, Europe, Australia and Asia, comprised of Carnival Cruise Lines, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, Seabourn, AIDA Cruises, Costa Cruises, Cunard, Ibero Cruises, P&O Cruises (UK) and P&O Cruises (Australia).
Together, these brands operate 98 ships totaling more than 191,000 lower berths with 10 new ships scheduled to be delivered between March 2011 and May 2014. Carnival Corporation & plc also operates Holland America Princess Alaska Tours, the leading tour company in Alaska and the Canadian Yukon. Traded on both the New York and London Stock Exchanges, Carnival Corporation & plc is the only group in the world to be included in both the S&P 500 and the FTSE 100 indices.
Cautionary Note Concerning Factors That May Affect Future Results
Some of the statements, estimates or projections contained in this earnings release are "forward-looking statements" that involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions with respect to Carnival Corporation & plc, including some statements concerning future results, outlooks, plans, goals and other events which have not yet occurred. These statements are intended to qualify for the safe harbors from liability provided by Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. We have tried, whenever possible, to identify these statements by using words like "will," "may," "could," "should," "would," "believe," "expect," "anticipate," "forecast," "future," "intend," "plan," "estimate" and similar expressions of future intent or the negative of such terms. Because forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, there are many factors that could cause Carnival Corporation & plc's actual results, performance or achievements to differ materially from those expressed or implied in this earnings release. Forward-looking statements include those statements which may impact, among other things, the forecasting of Carnival Corporation & plc's earnings per share, net revenue yields, booking levels, pricing, occupancy, operating, financing and tax costs, fuel expenses, costs per available lower berth day, estimates of ship depreciable lives and residual values, liquidity, goodwill and trademark fair values and outlook. These factors include, but are not limited to, the following: general economic and business conditions; fluctuations in foreign currency exchange rates; the international political climate, armed conflicts, terrorist and pirate attacks, vessel seizures, and threats thereof, and other world events affecting the safety and security of travel; competition from and overcapacity in the cruise ship or land-based vacation industries; accidents, the spread of contagious diseases and threats thereof, adverse weather conditions or natural disasters and other incidents affecting the health, safety, security and satisfaction of guests and crew; adverse publicity concerning the cruise industry in general, or Carnival Corporation & plc in particular, including any adverse impact that cruising may have on the marine environment; changes in and compliance with laws and regulations relating to the protection of persons with disabilities, employment, environment, health, safety, security, tax and other regulations under which Carnival Corporation & plc operates; economic, market and political factors that are beyond Carnival Corporation & plc's control, which could increase its operating, financing and other costs; the ability of Carnival Corporation & plc to implement its shipbuilding programs and ship repairs, maintenance and refurbishments on terms that are favorable or consistent with its expectations; increases in Carnival Corporation & plc's repairs and maintenance expenses and refurbishment costs as its fleet ages; the continued strength of Carnival Corporation & plc's cruise brands and its ability to implement its brand strategies; Carnival Corporation & plc's international operations are subject to additional risks not generally applicable to its U.S. operations; geographic regions in which Carnival Corporation & plc tries to expand its business may be slow to develop and ultimately not develop how it expects; whether Carnival Corporation & plc's future operating cash flow will be sufficient to fund future obligations and whether it will be able to obtain financing, if necessary, in sufficient amounts and on terms that are favorable or consistent with its expectations; Carnival Corporation & plc counterparties' abilities to perform; continuing financial viability of Carnival Corporation & plc's travel agent distribution system, air service providers and other key vendors in its supply chain and reductions in the availability of, and increases in the pricing for, the services and products provided by these vendors; Carnival Corporation & plc's decisions to self-insure against various risks or its inability to obtain insurance for certain risks at reasonable rates; disruptions and other damages to Carnival Corporation & plc's information technology and other networks and operations and breaches in data security; loss of key personnel or Carnival Corporation & plc's ability to recruit or retain qualified personnel; union disputes and other employee relation issues; lack of continuing availability of attractive, convenient and safe port destinations; and risks associated with the dual listed company arrangement. Forward-looking statements should not be relied upon as a prediction of actual results. Subject to any continuing obligations under applicable law or any relevant stock exchange rules, Carnival Corporation & plc expressly disclaim any obligation to disseminate, after the date of this release, any updates or revisions to any such forward-looking statements to reflect any change in expectations or events, conditions or circumstances on which any such statements are based.
Consolidated gross and net cruise costs and net cruise costs excluding fuel per ALBD were computed by dividing the gross and net cruise costs and net cruise costs excluding fuel, without rounding, by ALBDs as follows (dollars in millions, except costs per ALBD) (a):
(a) We use net cruise revenues per ALBD ("net revenue yields"), net cruise costs per ALBD and net cruise costs excluding fuel per ALBD as significant non-GAAP financial measures of our cruise segment financial performance. These measures enable us to separate the impact of predictable capacity changes from the more unpredictable rate changes that affect our business. We believe these non-GAAP measures provide an expanded insight to measure our revenue and cost performance in addition to the standard U.S. GAAP-based financial measures.
Net revenue yields are commonly used in the cruise industry to measure a company's cruise segment revenue performance and for revenue management purposes. We use "net cruise revenues" rather than "gross cruise revenues" to calculate net revenue yields. We believe that net cruise revenues is a more meaningful measure in determining revenue yield than gross cruise revenues because it reflects the cruise revenues earned net of our most significant variable costs, which are travel agent commissions, cost of air and other transportation, certain other costs that are directly associated with onboard and other revenues and credit card fees. Substantially all of our remaining cruise costs are largely fixed, except for the impact of changing prices, once our ship capacity levels have been determined.
Net passenger ticket revenues reflect gross cruise revenues, net of (1) onboard and other revenues, (2) commissions, transportation and other costs and (3) onboard and other cruise costs. Net onboard and other revenues reflect gross cruise revenues, net of (1) passenger ticket revenues, (2) commissions, transportation and other costs and (3) onboard and other cruise costs. Net passenger ticket revenue yields and net onboard and other revenue yields are computed by dividing net passenger ticket revenues and net onboard and other revenues by ALBDs.
Net cruise costs per ALBD and net cruise costs excluding fuel per ALBD are the most significant measures we use to monitor our ability to control our cruise segment costs rather than gross cruise costs per ALBD. We exclude the same variable costs that are included in the calculation of net cruise revenues to calculate net cruise costs with and without fuel to avoid duplicating these variable costs in our non-GAAP financial measures.
We have not provided estimates of future gross revenue yields or future gross cruise costs per ALBD because the quantitative reconciliations of forecasted gross cruise revenues to forecasted net cruise revenues or forecasted gross cruise costs to forecasted net cruise costs would include a significant amount of uncertainty in projecting the costs deducted to arrive at this measure. As such, management does not believe that this reconciling information would be meaningful.
In addition, because our Europe, Australia & Asia cruise brands utilize the euro, sterling and Australian dollar to measure their results and financial condition, the translation of those operations to our U.S. dollar reporting currency results in decreases in reported U.S. dollar revenues and expenses if the U.S. dollar strengthens against these foreign currencies, and increases in reported U.S. dollar revenues and expenses if the U.S. dollar weakens against these foreign currencies. Accordingly, we also monitor and report our non-GAAP financial measures assuming the 2011 period currency exchange rates have remained constant with the 2010 period rates, or on a "constant dollar basis," in order to remove the impact of changes in exchange rates on our non-U.S. dollar cruise operations. We believe that this is a useful measure since it facilitates a comparative view of the growth of our business in a fluctuating currency exchange rate environment.
There are no specific rules for determining our non-GAAP current and constant dollar financial measures and, accordingly, it is possible that they may not be exactly comparable to the like-kind information presented by other cruise companies, which is a potential risk associated with using these measures to compare us to other cruise companies.
(b) ALBDs is a standard measure of passenger capacity for the period, which we use to perform rate and capacity variance analyses to determine the main non-capacity driven factors that cause our cruise revenues and expenses to vary. ALBDs assume that each cabin we offer for sale accommodates two passengers and is computed by multiplying passenger capacity by revenue-producing ship operating days in the period.
(c) For the three months ended February 28, 2011 and 2010, selling and administrative expenses were $422 million and $396 million, respectively. For the three months ended February 28, 2011 and 2010, selling and administrative expenses were comprised of cruise selling and administrative expenses of $416 million and $389 million and Tour and Other selling and administrative expenses of $6 million and $7 million, respectively.
SOURCE Carnival Corporation