Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL Corporation Ltd., “Norwegian” or the “Company”) today reported results for the three months ended March 31, 2011.
Adjusted EBITDA for the first quarter of 2011 improved 37.5% to $81.9 million versus $59.5 million for the same period of 2010. Net Revenue for the quarter increased 20.7% to $368.0 million from $304.9 million in 2010 resulting from a 17.9% increase in Capacity Days, due to the addition of Norwegian Epic to the fleet in June 2010, coupled with an increase in Net Yield of 2.4%. The increase in Net Yield was a result of both improved passenger ticket pricing and increased onboard spend per Capacity Day. Occupancy Percentage for the period was 107.1% compared to 107.9% in the prior period.
Continued pricing discipline and cost control, along with economies of scale attributed to Norwegian Epic, allowed the Company to absorb a 6.6% increase in the per metric ton price of fuel in the period. The Company reported a decrease in Net Cruise Cost per Capacity Day of 1.3% versus prior year. The price of fuel for the first quarter of 2011 increased to $520 per metric ton from $488 in 2010. Excluding fuel expense, Net Cruise Cost per Capacity Day decreased 2.6%.
“I am pleased to see that pricing along with the impact of Norwegian Epic drove such a significant improvement in the quarter,” said Kevin Sheehan, Norwegian’s president and chief executive officer. “On top of the healthy pace our Net Yield grew in the quarter, we also rolled over a very lucrative one-month charter in February 2010 for the Winter Olympics in Vancouver. Excluding the pricing benefit of this charter, our Net Yield improvement would have been 3.8% for the quarter. In addition, our improved Adjusted EBITDA resulted not only from our increased revenue, but also our continued razor focus on controlling costs without affecting the guest experience.”
Interest expense, net of capitalized interest, increased to $47.9 million in the quarter compared to $35.8 million in 2010 due to increased borrowings mainly attributable to the addition of Norwegian Epic. Other income was $2.4 million in 2011 versus expense of $0.6 million in 2010. Net loss for the quarter decreased to $10.6 million on revenue of $495.5 million compared to a net loss of $16.1 million on revenue of $416.5 million in 2010.
The first phase of enhancements at Great Stirrup Cay, the Company’s 250-acre private island in the Bahamas, has been completed. A new marina and dining facility on the island opened in February, representing a significant milestone in the $25 million enhancement project. A new welcome pavilion is scheduled to open this month and construction on a new straw market is commencing. “Great Stirrup Cay was developed to provide our guests an extraordinary island experience and we are thrilled with the exceptionally positive feedback we are receiving on the recent enhancements,” commented Sheehan.