BERMUDA, 9 November 2017 - Avance Gas Holding Ltd (OSE: AVANCE) today reported unaudited results for the third quarter and first nine months of 2017.
Fleet growth and reduced US exports driving down Q3 2017 results:
- The average time charter equivalent (TCE) rate for the fleet was $7,524/day, down from $12,445/day in Q2 2017, reflecting a combination of global fleet growth and reduced LPG exports from the US.
- TCE earnings in Q3 2017 were $9.7 million, down from $15.8 million in Q2 2017.
- Average daily operating expenses (OPEX) for Q3 2017 were $7,496/day, compared with $7,824/day in Q2 2017, reflecting normal fluctuations and the effect of continued actions to manage costs.
- Avance Gas reported a net loss of $17.8 million, compared with a net loss of $11.1 million in Q2 2017.
- Avance Gas' available liquidity at quarter end was $123.1 million, consisting of available undrawn revolving credit facilities of $65.0 million and the company's cash balance of $58.1 million.
The weak freight market continued in Q3, mainly due to volatile US LPG exports and further fleet growth. Another eight new ships were added during Q3 2017 bringing the total deliveries year-to-date 2017 to 19 ships. By end quarter, the orderbook consisted of 29 ships (11% of the existing fleet), of which 12 ships are scheduled for delivery by end-2018. The balance will be delivered in 2019-2020. Fleet utilization for the quarter was 97%, compared to 89% in Q2 2017 and a year-to-date utilization of 90%.
After the record low export volumes from US Gulf/USEC of 32 VLGC cargoes in June, volumes increased to 37 cargoes in July. August exports fell back to 29 cargoes impacted by temporary terminal shutdowns due to hurricane Harvey. September volumes rebounded to more than 50 cargoes, giving a monthly average of 40 cargoes for the quarter and 43 cargoes year-to-date 2017. Middle Eastern exports grew marginally to 9.4m tons in Q3, up from 9.3m tons in Q2. The share of US cargoes discharging in Asia represented 64% by end August 2017.
The freight market turned early August and has since then gradually improved, backed by increased LPG export from US. The capacity limitations in the Panama Canal also contributes positively to ton miles and fleet utilization. With a continued growth in US shale oil and gas production, we expect US LPG exports to grow, supporting a continued improvement in freight rates.
The Avance Gas Spot Index (adjusted 30 days) for Q3 averaged $5,843/day, compared with $14,387/day in Q2 2017.
The full report and interim financial statements are attached to this press release.
For further queries, please contact:
Christian Andersen, President
Tel: +47 22 00 48 05
Peder C. G. Simonsen, CFO
Tel: +47 22 00 48 15
ABOUT AVANCE GAS
Avance Gas Holding Ltd operates in the global market for transportation of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG). The company is one of the world's leading owners and operators of very large gas carriers (VLGCs), operating a fleet of 14 modern ships.
For more information about Avance Gas, please visit: www.avancegas.com.
FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS
Matters discussed in this announcement may constitute forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are statements that are not historical facts and may be identified by words such as "anticipate", "believe", "continue", "estimate", "expect", "intends", "may", "should", "will" and similar expressions. The forward-looking statements in this release are based upon various assumptions, many of which are based, in turn, upon further assumptions. Although Avance Gas believes that these assumptions were reasonable when made, these assumptions are inherently subject to significant known and unknown risks, uncertainties, contingencies and other important factors which are difficult or impossible to predict and are beyond its control. Such risks, uncertainties, contingencies and other important factors could cause actual events to differ materially from the expectations expressed or implied in this release by such forward-looking statements.
The information, opinions and forward-looking statements contained in this announcement speak only as at its date, and are subject to change without notice.
This information is subject to disclosure requirements pursuant to Section 5-12 of the Norwegian Securities Trading Act.