World News: 12:00 GMT Thursday 6th December 2018. [Ferrellgas Partners, L.P. via Globe Newswire via SPi World News]
LIBERTY, Mo., Dec. 06, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Ferrellgas Partners, L.P. (NYSE:FGP) (“Ferrellgas” or the “Company”) today reported financial results for its fiscal first quarter ended October 31, 2018.
For the quarter, the Company reported a net loss attributable to Ferrellgas Partners, L.P. of $57.0 million, or $.58 per common unit, compared to prior year period net loss of $47.9 million, or $.49 per common unit.
Adjusted EBITDA, a non-GAAP measure, was $17.8 million compared to $26.2 million in the prior year. The following table represents the contribution to adjusted EBITDA from ongoing propane operations as well as from assets that were sold during 2018.
On a trailing twelve month basis, adjusted EBITDA from on going propane operations and corporate support as of October 31, 2018 is $226.5 million compared to $227.7 million as of July 31, 2018.
The Company’s propane operations reported that total gallons sold increased 5.9 million gallons, or three percent, over prior year. Margins were over two percent higher than the prior year despite increased competitive pressure in the tank exchange business. The Company continues its aggressive approach to gaining market share. This strategic focus resulted in approximately 24,500 new customers, or approximately four percent more than prior year. Additionally, the Company’s current Blue Rhino tank exchange sales locations have increased over 12 percent from prior year to over 53,800 locations. Overall, the increase in sales volume growth and margins per gallon resulted in an increase in gross margin dollars of $4.4 million. The Company’s ongoing commitment to investing in the business led to higher operating expenses during the quarter which were largely the result of new locations established to be in closer proximity to current and potential customers as the company looks to continue increasing market share and customer density. As a result of this investment and the growth in sales volumes, operating, general and administractive expenses in our Propane segment were $6.1 million higher than the prior year.
Liquidity of $250.1 million at October 31, 2018 resulted from $186.9 million of available borrowing capacity on the Company’s secured credit facility and $63.2 million of cash.
“We are extremely pleased with the quarterly results as our strategy to invest in the growth of the business is paying dividends even faster than anticipated,” said James E. Ferrell, Interim Chief Executive Officer and President of Ferrellgas. “We are committed to growing market share organically and through acquisition. As expected, operating expenses would exceed growth in gross margin dollars leading into the quarter, however, we were able recover those investments almost completely with an extremely strong month of October. We have momentum leading into the winter heating season with a stronger customer base, larger footprint and committed employee owners.”
As previously announced, the Company indefinitely suspended its quarterly cash distribution resulting from a failure to meet the required fixed charge coverage ratio within the senior unsecured notes due 2020.
In addition to solidifying the Company’s liquidity with the fourth quarter 2018 closing of the $575 million secured credit facility and extension of its accounts receivable securitization facility and cash from 2018 announced asset sales, the Company is in the process of engaging a financial advisor to assist in evaluating all available options to address its leverage.
“Our Company is focused on growth.” said Ferrell. “We have the liquidity to continue executing on this strategy and I expect that we will resolve our leverage situation in the near future to position our Company for continued success.”
Globe Newswire: 12:00 GMT Thursday 6th December 2018
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