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Saturday, June 30, 2012

Business picking up again for Carnival Corporation: Second Quarter financial results



MIAMI (June 22, 2012) – Carnival Corporation & plc (NYSE/LSE: CCL; NYSE: CUK) announced non-GAAP net income of $159 million, or $0.20 diluted earnings per share for the second quarter of 2012.
Reported U.S. GAAP net income, which includes unrealized losses on fuel derivatives of $145 million, was $14 million, or $0.02 diluted earnings per share.
Net income for the second quarter of 2011 was $206 million, or $0.26 diluted EPS.  Revenues for the second quarter of 2012 were $3.5 billion compared to $3.6 billion for the prior year. 

Carnival Corporation & plc Chairman and CEO Micky Arison noted that non-GAAP earnings were better than anticipated in the company’s March guidance due primarily to a combination of higher than expected revenue yields and lower than expected costs, partly attributed to non-recurring items, in the second quarter.
Commenting on the second quarter, Arison said “Cruise ticket prices (excluding Costa) held firm close to sailing which, combined with stronger than expected onboard revenues, drove yields above prior year levels. Our North American brands performed well, achieving a 3 percent revenue yield improvement compared to the prior year, which more than offset slightly lower yields for our Europe, Australia and Asia brands (excluding Costa).  In addition, continued focus on cost controls and fuel consumption helped to mitigate the impact of higher fuel prices in the quarter.” 

Key metrics for the second quarter 2012 compared to the prior year were as follows:
·         Second quarter results included $17 million, or $0.02 per share, of insurance proceeds in excess of net book value which were previously expected to be received in the third quarter, and $17 million, or $0.02 per share, received from a litigation settlement.
·         On a constant dollar basis net revenue yields (net revenue per available lower berth day, “ALBD”) decreased 1.4 percent for 2Q 2012, which was better than March guidance, down 2.5 to 3.5 percent. Excluding Costa, net revenue yields increased 1.1 percent for 2Q 2012, which was also higher than March guidance of flat to down slightly. Gross revenue yields decreased 4.2 percent in current dollars.
·         Net cruise costs per ALBD excluding fuel and non-recurring items decreased 2.2 percent in constant dollars, better than March guidance of flat to down 1.0 percent. Gross cruise costs per ALBD including fuel and non-recurring items  decreased 3.6 percent in current dollars.                  
·         Fuel prices increased 12 percent to $756 per metric ton for 2Q 2012 from $673 per metric ton in 2Q 2011, costing the company an additional $71 million. Fuel prices were slightly lower than March guidance of $772 per metric ton.
·         In March, the company entered into zero cost collars for an additional 19 percent of its estimated fuel consumption for the second half of fiscal 2012 through fiscal 2013, bringing the total covered to 38 percent over this period. The company also has zero cost collars in place that cover 19 percent of its estimated fuel consumption for fiscal 2014 and 2015. For further information on the company’s fuel derivatives program see “Fuel Derivatives” below.
·         Three new ships were delivered during the second quarter, Costa Fascinosa, AIDAmar and Carnival Breeze, each featuring a variety of unique and exciting innovations which have generated strong consumer and media interest.     

2012 Outlook 
            Since March, fleetwide booking volumes have continued to improve and are running well ahead of the prior year at lower prices. For the last seven weeks, booking volumes excluding Costa have increased 8 percent versus the prior year, while booking volumes for Costa over the same time period are up 25 percent. For the remainder of the year, cumulative advance bookings excluding Costa are three occupancy points behind the prior year at slightly lower prices while cumulative advance bookings for Costa are at lower occupancies and lower prices compared with the prior year.
Looking forward, Carnival Corporation & plc Chairman and CEO Micky Arison commented, “The increase in booking volumes indicates that a progressive recovery is well underway and we are catching up following the slowdown in bookings during wave season, our peak booking period. The attractive pricing we have in the marketplace is clearly stimulating demand, especially for the Costa brand. We are pleased to see the resurgence in consumer demand for Costa, which is a testament to the brand’s long-standing reputation for quality built over many decades.”

Excluding Costa, the company forecasts full year 2012 net revenue yields, on a constant dollar basis, to be down slightly. Including Costa, the company expects a decline in net revenue yields of 3 to 4 percent (constant dollars). The company has slightly reduced the mid-point of its 2012 yield guidance as the price incentives required to drive the booking volumes needed to close the occupancy gap was more than had been previously anticipated for the second half of the year.  Full year 2012 revenue yields for the North American brands are expected to be in line with the prior year. Full year 2012 revenue yields for the European brands, excluding Costa, are expected to be lower than the prior year.
            Lower net revenue yield expectations have been offset by greater than anticipated cost reductions. The company expects net cruise costs, excluding fuel, per ALBD for the full year 2012 to be down slightly compared with the prior year on a constant dollar basis. In addition, lower fuel prices (net of forecasted realized losses on fuel derivatives) partially offset by changes in currency exchange rates are expected to increase full year 2012 earnings by $0.30 per share compared to March guidance.
Taking all the above factors into consideration, the company forecasts full year 2012 non-GAAP diluted earnings per share to be in the range of $1.80 to $1.90, compared to the March guidance range of $1.40 to $1.70 per share and 2011 non-GAAP earnings of $2.42 per share.
            Arison stated, “The long term fundamentals of our business remain sound. As we look toward the future, we are excited by the prospect for continued global expansion beyond our established markets in North America and Western Europe. We are pursuing multiple opportunities to develop emerging cruise markets including positioning a second Costa ship in China and through a series of Princess cruises dedicated to the Japanese market in 2013.”

Third Quarter 2012 Outlook 
Third quarter constant dollar net revenue yields excluding Costa, are expected to decrease 3 to 4 percent (including Costa, expected to decrease 6 to 7 percent) compared to the prior year. Net cruise costs excluding fuel per ALBD for the third quarter are expected to be down slightly on a constant dollar basis compared to the prior year.  In addition, changes in currency exchange rates partially offset by lower fuel prices (net of forecasted realized losses on fuel derivatives) are expected to reduce third quarter earnings by $0.03 per share compared to the prior year. 
Based on the above factors, the company expects non-GAAP diluted earnings for the third quarter 2012 to be in the range of $1.42 to $1.46 per share versus 2011 non-GAAP earnings of $1.69 per share.

Selected Key Forecast Metrics

          Full Year 2012                          

 Third Quarter 2012

Year over year change:


Constant Dollars


Constant Dollars
Net revenue yields

     (5) to   (6)%

    (3) to  (4) %

 (9.5) to (10.5)%

      (6) to (7)%
Net cruise costs excl. fuel / ALBD  

  (2.5) to (3.5)%

 (0.5) to (1.5)%

    (4) to (5)%

   (0.5) to (1.5)%

    Full Year 2012

Third Quarter 2012
Fuel price per metric ton


Fuel consumption (metric tons in thousands)


Currency:   Euro

      $1.29 to €1

 $1.27 to €1

      $1.58 to £1

 $1.57 to £1

Conference Call
The company has scheduled a conference call with analysts at 10:00 a.m. EDT (3:00 p.m. BST) today to discuss its 2012 second quarter results.  This call can be listened to live, and additional information can be obtained, via Carnival Corporation & plc’s Web site at www.carnivalcorp.com and www.carnivalplc.com. 
Carnival Corporation & plc is the largest cruise company 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 (Australia) and P&O Cruises (UK). 
Together, these brands operate 101 ships totaling 204,000 lower berths with seven new ships scheduled to be delivered between March 2013 and March 2016.  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
Carnival Corporation and Carnival plc and their respective subsidiaries are referred to collectively in this release as “Carnival Corporation & plc,” “our,” “us,” and “we.” Some of the statements, estimates or projections contained in this release are “forward-looking statements” that involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions with respect to us, 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,” “depends,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “forecast,” “future,” “intend,” “plan,” “estimate,” “target,” “indicate” 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 our actual results, performance or achievements to differ materially from those expressed or implied in this release.  Forward-looking statements include those statements that may impact, among other things, the forecasting of our non-GAAP earnings per share (“EPS”); net revenue yields; booking levels; pricing; occupancy; operating, financing and tax costs, including 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; increases in fuel prices; 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; 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; negative publicity concerning the cruise business in general or us in particular, including any adverse environmental impacts of cruising; litigation, enforcement actions, fines or penalties, including those relating to the Costa Concordia accident; economic, market and political factors that are beyond our control, which could increase our operating, financing and other costs; 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 we operate; our ability to implement our shipbuilding programs and ship repairs, maintenance and refurbishments on terms that are favorable or consistent with our expectations; increases to our repairs and maintenance expenses and refurbishment costs as our fleet ages; lack of continuing availability of attractive, convenient and safe port destinations; continuing financial viability of our travel agent distribution system, air service providers and other key vendors in our supply chain and reductions in the availability of, and increases in the pricing for, the services and products provided by these vendors; disruptions and other damages to our information technology and other networks and operations, and breaches in data security; competition from and overcapacity in the cruise ship or land-based vacation industry; loss of key personnel or our ability to recruit or retain qualified personnel; union disputes and other employee relation issues; disruptions in the global financial markets or other events may negatively affect the ability of our counterparties and others to perform their obligations to us; the continued strength of our cruise brands and our ability to implement our brand strategies; our international operations are subject to additional risks not generally applicable to our U.S. operations; geographic regions in which we try to expand our business may be slow to develop and ultimately not develop how we expect; our decisions to self-insure against various risks or our inability to obtain insurance for certain risks at reasonable rates; fluctuations in foreign currency exchange rates; whether our future operating cash flow will be sufficient to fund future obligations and whether we will be able to obtain financing, if necessary, in sufficient amounts and on terms that are favorable or consistent with our expectations; risks associated with the dual listed company arrangement and uncertainties of a foreign legal system as we are not incorporated in the U.S.  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, we 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.

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