Crude Carriers Corp. Q4 Report & Divident

Friday, February 11, 2011
Highlights:
· Declared a cash dividend of $0.30 per share for the fourth quarter of 2010
· Reported fourth quarter net profit of $2.4 million or $0.15 per share (‘EPS’).
· Earned average Time Charter Equivalent (‘TCE’) of $26,575 per day for the two Very Large Crude Carriers (‘VLCCs’) and $23,826 per day for the three Suezmaxes in the Company’s fleet.
 
Crude Carriers Corp.  (NYSE: CRU) reported its financial results and declared a cash dividend of $0.30 per share for the fourth quarter of 2010 payable on March 2, 2011 to shareholders of record on February 23, 2011.
 
The Company’s net profit for the quarter was $2.4 million or $0.15 per share, principally as a result of the commercial operations of our vessels that earned above the TD 3 and TD 5 indices that prevailed in the  crude tanker market during the fourth quarter of 2010, as well as a modest recovery in the Suezmax market compared to the third quarter of 2010. Revenues amounted to $12.7 million for the quarter, including $0.7 million of profit sharing revenues earned by  two of our vessels employed under the spot index linked time charter arrangement with Shell Shipping & Trading Co. 
 
Total  voyage and vessel operating  expenses for the quarter amounted to $4.6 million, of which $1.2 million were voyage expenses,  comprising  mostly of bunker costs and $3.4 million  were operating expenses. General and administrative expenses were  $1.7 million for the quarter, of which $0.6 million was a non-cash charge related to the Omnibus Incentive Compensation Plan. 
Interest expense and finance cost for the fourth quarter 2010 was $1.3 million, principally relating to the $134.6 million outstanding debt, drawn under our $200.0 million revolving credit facility.Quarterly Dividend of $0.30 per share.
 
The Company’s dividend policy, as described in the listing prospectus, is to pay a variable quarterly dividend based on our cash available for distribution, which represents net cash flow during the previous quarter generated by our vessels trading in the spot crude tanker market less any amount required  to maintain a reserve that our Board of Directors (the ‘Board’) determines from time to time is appropriate for the operation and future growth of our fleet.
 
The Company generated $4.8 million in cash available for distribution  during the quarter  and its Board declared a cash dividend of $0.30 per share for the period of October 1, 2010 to December 31, 2010.The cash dividend is payable on March 2, 2011 to all shareholders of record on February 23, 2011. 
 
Cash available for distribution is a non US GAAP financial measure described on Appendix A of this press release and in the Company’s second quarter 2010 earnings release.
 
Crude Tanker Market Overview
During the fourth quarter of 2010 the TD3 (Middle Eastern-Japan) and the TD5 (West Africa – US East Coast) indices averaged $19,758 per day and $20,077 per day. Crude spot market rates remained close to historical lows, due to the lack of storage demand. Overall, vessel  supply remained  high on the back of  continued deliveries  of newbuilding vessels, and  limited vessel demolition. The fourth quarter of 2010 saw a modest recovery in crude charter rates, compared to  the third quarter of 2010, especially in the Suezmax market, as a result of the seasonal uptick in demand.
 
Management Commentary:
Mr. Evangelos Marinakis, the  Company’s  CEO commented:  “Our fourth quarter results  continue to demonstrate the Company’s capacity to generate attractive dividends even in a weak market environment. Despite  a modest recovery, the  fourth quarter average spot earnings for VLCCs and Suezmaxes were among the lowest the market has experienced over the last decade. However, the profit sharing arrangements that we have in place with our charterers, as well as our own commercial operations, allowed us to outperform the  TD3 and TD5 indices. Furthermore, our  low cash breakeven and modern, high specification fleet put us in a strong position to weather a softer market environment, and capitalize on a future market recovery, as the continuously improving crude oil demand fundamentals bode well for the crude tanker market in the medium to long run.”
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