American Classic Voyages (AMCV) has reported net income of $200,000, or $0.01 per share, on revenues of $192.2 million for the year ended Dec. 31, 1998, compared to net income of $2.4 million, or $0.17 per share, on revenues of $177.9 million for 1997.
AMCV said that included in the 1998 results were $2.3 million of expenses associated with the company's plans to construct new vessels. The 1997 results included $1.6 million of extraordinary expenses.
AMCV reported 611,624 passenger cruise days for 1998 for a load factor of 92 percent, compared to 588,892 days and a load factor of 93 percent in 1997.
Net income for the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, 1998, was $1.5 million, or $0.10 per share, on revenues of $47.1 million, compared to net income of $500,000, or $0.03 per share, on revenues of $45.4 million for the fourth quarter of 1997.
The load factor for the fourth quarter of 1998 was 88 percent with 147,263 passenger cruise days compared to 93 percent and 152,807 passenger cruise days for the same period the previous year.
The lower fourth-quarter occupancy in 1998 was attributed to weaker occupancy for the river cruises.
At press time, AMCV said that per diems for the first six months of 1999 for The Delta Queen Steamboat Company were $279 compared to $265 at this time last year, and that occupancy was 76 percent compared to 80 percent last year. Advance bookings for the full year were 56 percent compared to 56 percent last year and per dierns were $290 compared to $280 in 1998.
For American Hawaii Cruises, per dierns were $203 and occupancy was 100 percent for the first six months compared to $217 and 90 percent at this time last year. Advance bookings were 77 percent for the full year compared to 68 percent last year with per dierns at $198 compared to $214 in 1998.
AMCV currently operates four vessels within its two brands. In addition, the company plans to build new ships for a new brand in Hawaii and expects to position a reflagged foreign vessel there from "late 2000" until its final newbuilding arrives.
AMCV is also in the process of acquiring another riverboat, the Pacific Queen, which it plans to launch on the West Coast in early 2000. In addition, the company is planning to build a series of coastal vessels.
The company is pursuing financing options for its newbuildings, including Title XI financing, and has also filed with the SEC for the sale of three million shares of common stock, to raise approximately $75 million and provide the first block of financing for AMCV's two-ship order with Mississippi-based Ingalls Shipbuilding.
According to the offering prospectus, the expected contract cost for each ship to be built by Ingalls is estimated at $450-$470 million (the original estimate was $400 million), representing a per-berth construction cost of $234,375 to $241,025. AMCV expects to spend between $60 million and $90 million on the Ingalls newbuilding program in 1999.
The final price tag of the Pacific Queen riverboat purchase is expected to total $18.2 million, $8.2 million for the acquisition, $10 million for refurbishment (refurbishment was originally expected to cost no more than $7.5 million). And the price tag for the coastal cruisers is now estimated to be $35 million (up from $25 million).