Safe Bulkers Reports 4Q, 12-Month 2012 Results; Declares Dividend

Press Release
Thursday, February 21, 2013

Safe Bulkers, Inc., an international provider of marine drybulk transportation services, announced today its unaudited financial results for the three and twelve month period ended December 31, 2012. The Company’s Board of Directors also declared a quarterly dividend of $0.05 per share for the fourth quarter of 2012.

Summary of Fourth Quarter 2012 Results:

 

  • Net revenue for the fourth quarter of 2012 increased by 8% to $46.4 million from $42.9 million, during the same period in 2011.
  • Net income for the fourth quarter of 2012 increased by 36% to $32.2 million from $23.6 million, during the same period in 2011. Adjusted net income1 for the fourth quarter of 2012 decreased by 15% to $20.5 million from $24.0 million, during the same period in 2011.
  • EBITDA2 for the fourth quarter of 2012 increased by 39% to $43.9 million from $31.7 million during the same period in 2011. Adjusted EBITDA1 for the fourth quarter of 2012 increased marginally at $32.2 million from $32.1 million during the same period in 2011.
  • Earnings per share (“EPS”) and Adjusted EPS1 for the fourth quarter of 2012 was $0.42 and $0.27, respectively, calculated on a weighted average number of shares of 76,665,956, compared to $0.33 and $0.34, respectively, during the fourth quarter of 2011, calculated on a weighted average number of shares of 70,894,420.
  • The Company’s Board of Directors declared a dividend of $0.05 per share for the fourth quarter of 2012.


Summary of Twelve Month Period Ended December 31, 2012 Results

 

  • Net revenue for the twelve month period ended December 31, 2012 increased by 9% to $184.3 million from $168.9 million during the same period in 2011.
  • Net income for the twelve month period ended December 31, 2012 increased by 7% to $96.1 million from $89.7 million during the same period in 2011. Adjusted net income for the twelve month period ended December 31, 2012 decreased by 13% to $89.8 million from $102.8 million, during the same period in 2011.
  • EBITDA for the twelve month period ended December 31, 2012 increased by 16% to $137.5 million from $118.2 million during the same period in 2011. Adjusted EBITDA for the twelve month period ended December 31, 2012 decreased marginally to $131.2 million from $131.3 million during the same period in 2011.
  • EPS and Adjusted EPS for the twelve month period ended December 31, 2012 was $1.27 and $1.19, respectively, calculated on a weighted average number of shares of 75,468,465, compared to $1.29 and $1.48, respectively, during the same period in 2011, calculated on a weighted average number of shares of 69,463,093.

Fleet and Employment Profile

In December 2012, citing excessive construction delays, the Company exercised its termination right under an agreement for the construction, sale and delivery by a shipyard to the Company of an 180,000 dwt, Capesize class newbuild vessel and delivered demands for a refund for the full amount of advances paid by the Company under such agreement, with interest, to each of the shipyard and the relevant refund guarantor (a bank rated Aa3 by Moody’s Investor Services) pursuant to such agreement and the associated refund guarantees, respectively.

In response, in January 2013, the Company received a notice of arbitration and initiated arbitration proceedings in London, England, with the shipyard. The arbitration dispute remains ongoing. The shipyard alleges that the Company’s termination constitutes a breach of the agreement and argues that the Company is not entitled to a refund of any of the $31.8 million in advances paid, or interest. The Company has classified the $31.8 million in advances as Other current assets. The Company is and will continue vigorously pursuing the arbitration and believes that the merits in this dispute rest in the Company’s favor. However, arbitration is inherently uncertain and the Company cannot provide assurance that it will prevail.

In December 2012, the Company took early redelivery of the Martine, ahead of the contracted earliest redelivery date of January 21, 2014. In connection with this early redelivery, the Company recognized early redelivery income of $8.5 million, consisting of cash compensation paid by the relevant charterer of $8.6 million, net of commissions, less accrued revenue of $0.1 million. The Company employs the Martine in the spot market.

In December 2012, the Company took early redelivery of the Maria, ahead of the contracted earliest redelivery date of February 24, 2014. In connection with this early redelivery, the Company recognized early redelivery income of $3.2 million, consisting of cash compensation paid by the relevant charterer of $3.4 million, net of commissions, less accrued revenue of $0.2 million. The Company employs the Maria in the spot market.

In December 2012, the Company agreed with the charterer of the Maritsa the early termination of a charter party of which the contracted earliest redelivery date was January 29, 2015. The vessel was redelivered to the Company in January 2013, whereupon the Company received cash compensation of $13.1 million. The Company employs the Maritsa with the same charterer in the period time charter market.

In January 2013, the Company acquired and took delivery of the Paraskevi, a second-hand, 74,300 dwt, Japanese, 2003-built, Panamax class vessel, for a purchase price of $13.8 million. The Paraskevi was delivered to the Company with dry-docking and special survey passed.

In January 2013, the Company contracted to acquire the Pedhoulas Commander, a secondhand, 83,700 dwt, Japanese, 2008-built, Kamsarmax class vessel, for a purchase price of $19.4 million. The Company believes that it will take delivery of Pedhoulas Commander sometime in March 2013.

In January 2013, the Company agreed to a new scheduled delivery of Hull 1659, to be in the first half of 2014, instead of the initial scheduled delivery in the second half of 2013.

As of February 15, 2013, the Company’s operational fleet, was comprised of 25 drybulk vessels with an average age of 4.8 years and an aggregate carrying capacity of 2.28 million dwt. The 25-vessel fleet consists of seven Panamax class vessels, six Kamsarmax class vessels, 10 Post-Panamax class vessels and two Capesize class vessels, and each such vessel was built post 2003.

As of February 15, 2013, the Company, has contracted to acquire six additional drybulk newbuild vessels and one secondhand vessel, with deliveries scheduled at various times through 2015. The orderbook consists of three newbuild Panamax vessels, two Post-Panamax vessels and one Capesize vessel. The secondhand vessel is Kamsarmax.

As of February 15, 2013, the contracted employment of fleet ownership days was:
 

2013 (remaining) ……………….....60%
2013 (full year) ……………………65%
2014 …..…………………………...26%
2015 …..…………………………..13%

Capital expenditure requirements and liquidity as of February 15, 2013
 

As of February 15, 2013, the remaining capital expenditure requirements to shipyards or sellers, net of commissions for the delivery of the six newbuild and one secondhand vessel, amounted to $193.5 million, of which $68.1 million is scheduled to be paid in 2013, $74.2 million in 2014 and $51.2 million in 2015. We anticipate satisfying these capital expenditure requirements from existing cash and time deposits, borrowings against our long-term floating rate note investment, cash surplus from operations and existing revolving credit facilities and commitments.

As of February 15, 2013, the Company had $47.0 million in cash and short-term time deposits, $22.8 million in short-term restricted cash, $3.9 million in long-term restricted cash, $68.9 million available under existing revolving credit facilities and $40.0 million undrawn availability against our $50.0 million floating rate note.

Apart from the above loan and credit facilities and commitments, the Company utilizes cash flows from operations generated by its contracted period time charters. The Company has also the ability to borrow additional amounts secured by two existing debt-free vessels, six newbuild vessels and one second-hand vessel, on which additional financing may be contracted, upon delivery of such vessels to the Company as and if required.

Dividend Declaration

The Company’s Board of Directors declared a cash dividend on the Company’s common stock of $0.05 per share payable on or about March 8, 2013 to shareholders of record at the close of trading of the Company's common stock on the New York Stock Exchange (the “NYSE”) on March 4, 2013. The Company has 76,670,460 shares of common stock issued and outstanding as of today’s date.

The Board of Directors of the Company is continuing a policy of paying out a portion of the Company’s free cash flow at a level it considers prudent in light of the current economic and financial environment. The declaration and payment of dividends, if any, will always be subject to the discretion of the Board of Directors of the Company. The timing and amount of any dividends declared will depend on, among other things: (i) the Company’s earnings, financial condition and cash requirements and available sources of liquidity, (ii) decisions in relation to the Company’s growth strategies, (iii) provisions of Marshall Islands and Liberian law governing the payment of dividends, (iv) restrictive covenants in the Company’s existing and future debt instruments and (v) global financial conditions. Accordingly, the Company may reduce or not pay dividends in the future.

Management Commentary

Dr. Loukas Barmparis, President of the Company, said: “Our Board of Directors has declared our nineteenth consecutive dividend since our IPO in the amount of $0.05 per share. The last quarter we were focused on reducing our counter party risk through early redeliveries while strengthening our cash position. We are also focused on attractive secondhand acquisitions to better position ourselves before the next shipping cycle.”

A telephonic replay of the conference call will be available until February 28, 2013 by dialing 1 (866) 247-4222 (US Toll Free Dial In), 0(800) 953-1533 (UK Toll Free Dial In) or +44 (0)1452 550-000 (Standard International Dial In). Access Code: 1859591#

Slides and Audio Webcast
 

There will also be a live, and then archived, webcast of the conference call, available through the Company’s website (www.safebulkers.com). Participants in the live webcast should register on the website approximately 10 minutes prior to the start of the webcast.

Management Discussion of Fourth Quarter 2012 Results


Net income increased by 36% to $32.2 million for the fourth quarter of 2012 from $23.6 million for the same period in 2011, mainly due to the following factors:

Net revenues: Net revenues increased by 8% to $46.4 million for the fourth quarter of 2012, compared to $42.9 million for the same period in 2011, mainly due to an increased number of operating days. The Company operated 23.6 vessels on average during the fourth quarter of 2012, earning a time charter equivalent rate, or TCE3 of $20,845, compared to 17.41 vessels and a TCE rate of $26,330 during the same period in 2011.

Vessel operating expenses: Vessel operating expenses increased by 36% to $9.8 million for the fourth quarter of 2012, compared to $7.2 million for the same period in 2011. The increase in operating expenses is attributable to the increase in ownership days by 36% to 2,171 days for the fourth quarter of 2012 from 1,602 days for the same period in 2011. Daily vessel operating expenses increased slightly by 0.5% to $4,511 for the fourth quarter of 2012 compared to $4,487 for the same period in 2011.

Depreciation: Depreciation increased by 33% to $8.8 million for the fourth quarter of 2012, compared to $6.6 million for the same period in 2011, as a result of the increase in the average number of vessels owned and operated by the Company during the fourth quarter of 2012.

Early redelivery income: During the fourth quarter of 2012, the Company recorded $11.7 million of early redelivery income, versus $0.1 million for the same period in 2011. Early redelivery income recorded in the fourth quarter of 2012 as a result of the early termination of the charter party agreements of the Maria and Martine.

Interest expense: Interest expense increased by 93% to $2.9 million for the fourth quarter of 2012, compared to $1.5 million for the same period in 2011, as a result of the increase in the average amount of loans and credit facilities by the Company during the fourth quarter of 2012.

www.safebulkers.com

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