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Norwegian Cruise Line Beats Forecast

Nasdaq-listed Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. booked a strong first quarter with improved adjusted EPS of 17.4% to USD 0.27 on adjusted net income of USD 62.6 million.

Norwegian Cruise Line beats ForecastThe company posted a net income loss of USD 21,456 against a loss of USD 51, 692.  Revenue for the quarter came in at USD 938.2 million versus the consensus estimate of USD 962.67 million.

Earnings exceeded the company’s guidance of USD 0.20- 0.24 per share and benefited from lower than expected interest expense and better than anticipated net yield performance.

On a GAAP basis, diluted loss per share and net loss were USD 0.10 and USD 21.5 million, respectively, primarily due to transaction and integration related costs.

The adjusted net yield improved 18.9% (or 19.9% on a Constant Currency basis) mainly due to the acquisition of the Oceania Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises brands in the fourth quarter of 2014.

“I am pleased to report strong earnings out of the gate for our first full quarter of operations following the combination of Norwegian and Prestige late last year,” said Frank Del Rio, President and Chief Executive Officer of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd.

“These results are even more impressive as they come against strong comparables in the prior year, particularly for the Norwegian brand, and headwinds from foreign currency exchange rates,” continued Del Rio.

The company said that the integration of Norwegian and Prestige Cruise Holdings (Prestige) operations are largely complete.

As a result of continued integration and synergy identification efforts, the company has now identified USD 75 million in synergies for full year 2015, comprised of USD 30 million in revenue and USD 45 million in cost synergies.

Of the incremental synergies, the NCL is earmarking USD 20 million for reinvestment directed to business initiatives to further drive demand to the company’s three brands, resulting in net synergies of USD 55 million for 2015.

For the full year 2016, the company has identified synergies of USD 115 million which includes the annualization of initiatives introduced in 2015 coupled with new initiatives. Of these, the company plans to reinvest USD 40 million, resulting in net synergies for the year of USD 75 million.

“The net synergies will have an immediate impact on the bottom line in 2015, while amounts reinvested in our business initiatives will benefit our strategies for earnings growth in 2016 and beyond,” continued Del Rio.

Norwegian Cruise Line also provided guidance for the second quarter and full year 2015.

Guidance for adjusted net yield ranges between 17.5 to 18.5% for the second quarter whereas for the full year it amounts to 17.5%.

“We are raising the midpoint of our guidance to take into account the better than anticipated interest expense and net yield performance in the first quarter,” said Wendy Beck, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of NCL.

“We are maintaining our net yield and net cruise cost guidance for the year as benefits from our incremental revenue synergies offset the anticipated foreign currency headwinds and the revenue impact from the unscheduled dry-dock of Norwegian Star. Further, the reinvestment of $20 million into demand-driving initiatives is offset by incremental cost synergies identified in the quarter,”continued Beck.

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