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Englewood, CO – April 2, 2018 – Westmoreland Coal Company (Nasdaq:WLB) (the “Company”) today reported its fourth quarter and full year 2017 financial results and provided an update on its capital structure evaluation. In light of ongoing discussions with Westmoreland’s creditors in connection with the Company’s capital structure review, Westmoreland will not host a conference call for investors this quarter.
2017 Results and Highlights:
- Revenues of $363.8 million from 12.8 million tons sold
- Net income applicable to common shareholders of $35.1 million, or $1.87 per share
- Adjusted EBITDA of $86.0 million
- Cash flow provided by operating activities of $93.0 million;
- Free cash flow of $83 million;
- Revenues of $1.4 billion from 49.7 million tons sold
- Net loss applicable to common shareholders of $71.3 million, or $3.82 per share
- Adjusted EBITDA of $269.3 million
- Cash flow provided by operating activities of $114.2 million
- Free cash flow of $129.6 million
“Cash flow generated by our business exceeded expectations in 2017 as we benefited from our safe and efficient operations and meeting our customer requirements under the long-term sales contracts,” said Interim President and Chief Executive Officer, Michael Hutchinson. “As we previously noted, we are working diligently to improve our capital structure so it better matches our cash flow profile.”
Gary Kohn, Westmoreland’s Chief Financial Officer, stated, “Together with our financial and legal advisers we are designing an improved capital structure for Westmoreland Coal and all of our subsidiaries. Our aim is to create a capital structure that better aligns with our cash flow and allows for an improved balance sheet. During the restructuring process, we have remained focused on safety and on providing our customers with the level of service they have come to expect from Westmoreland.”
Westmoreland’s safety metrics for the year ended December 31, 2017 are shown below:
|Year Ended December 31, 2017|
|U.S. Surface Operations||1.45||0.89|
|U.S National Surface Average||1.35||0.78|
|U.S. Underground Operations||1.55||0.97|
|U.S. National Underground Average||4.86||3.78|
Balance Sheet, Cash Flow and Liquidity
Westmoreland finished the year with $103.2 million in cash and cash equivalents, up from $60.1 million at December 31, 2016. At December 31, 2017, the company had an undrawn $50 million revolving credit facility, of which $28.7 million, net of letters of credit and borrowing base restrictions, was available for borrowing.
Free cash flow generated in 2017 was $129.6 million, which was the result of strong operations, favorable year-end working capital, and a net $13.4 million of released bond collateral. Bond collateral returns were previously included in cash from investing activities, but are now included on several lines of cash from operating activities on the cash flow statement. As a result, bond collateral return is included in free cash flow generation. Capital expenditures totaled $35.0 million, and net cash from loan and lease receivables was $50.5 million. Included in cash flow provided by operations were cash uses for interest expense of $98.1 million and for asset retirement obligations of $43.4 million.
Gross debt plus capital lease obligations at December 31, 2017 totaled $1.1 billion, down $70.7 million from year end 2016. Outstanding gross indebtedness, cash on hand and net debt as of December 31, 2017 was as follows:
|Gross Debt||Cash on Hand||Net Debt|
Consolidated and Segment Results
Consolidated Adjusted EBITDA in the fourth quarter was $86.0 million, down 4% from the record high quarterly Adjusted EBITDA of $89.1 million in the same period of the prior year. Full year consolidated Adjusted EBITDA of $269.3 million, including an incremental $37.1 million from the early Capital Power repayment, was down slightly from the previous year.
The Coal – U.S. segment fourth quarter Adjusted EBITDA was up 18% to $43.9 million. Full year 2017 Adjusted EBITDA was up 2% to $129.3 million. These improvements were driven by high-margin reclamation work at the Jewett mine and performance from San Juan. Also reflected in the year-over-year comparisons are the 2016 coal supply contract expirations at the Jewett and Beulah mines.
The Coal – Canada segment fourth quarter Adjusted EBITDA was down 41% to $18.9 million. Full year 2017 Adjusted EBITDA was up 2% to $90.0 million. The year-over-year fourth quarter comparison was negatively impacted by the accelerated Capital Power receipt in the first quarter of 2017 due to the loss of financing income after the payment was made. Results in the Coal – Canada segment were also affected by the now-resolved dragline issues at Estevan and the cost overruns due to operational issues at Coal Valley earlier in the year.
The Coal – WMLP segment had fourth quarter Adjusted EBITDA of $15.8 million, a 25% decrease from the prior year, and full year Adjusted EBITDA of $68.7 million, a 13% decrease. Operations at the Coal – WMLP segment were negatively impacted by ongoing Ohio open-market pressures and the Kemmerer pit flooding in the first half of 2017.
The Power segment Adjusted EBITDA of $14.4 million in the fourth quarter and $11.3 million for the full year 2017 benefited from the acceleration of non-cash deferred revenue associated with the exit of the power supply contracts at ROVA.
Westmoreland expects to file its annual report on Form 10-K today containing an audit opinion with an explanatory paragraph referring to Westmoreland’s conclusion that substantial doubt exists regarding its ability to continue as a going concern. Delivery of financial statements with such an audit opinion constitutes a breach of certain covenants under the revolver and the San Juan term loan. If accelerated, default under the revolver can cause a cross-default to the Westmoreland term loan and senior notes. Westmoreland has obtained waivers from the specific lender groups with respect to the potential event of default, as well as certain other matters. The waivers provide Westmoreland with additional time to continue negotiations with lenders regarding changes to the capital structure. Substantially all of Westmoreland’s debt is now classified as current as of December 31, 2017.
Westmoreland has suspended the search for a permanent Chief Executive Officer until the conclusion of the capital structure negotiations.
Westmoreland presents certain non-GAAP financial measures, including Adjusted EBITDA and free cash flow, that Westmoreland believes provide meaningful supplemental information and provide meaningful comparability to prior periods. Reconciliations of non-GAAP to GAAP measures are presented in the accompanying tables.
About Westmoreland Coal Company
Westmoreland Coal Company is the oldest independent coal company in the United States. Westmoreland’s coal operations include surface coal mines in the United States and Canada, underground coal mines in Ohio and New Mexico, a char production facility, and a 50% interest in an activated carbon plant. Westmoreland also owns the general partner of and a majority interest in Westmoreland Resource Partners, LP, a publicly traded coal master limited partnership (NYSE:WMLP). For more information, visit www.westmoreland.com.
For further information please contact:
Gary Kohn, Chief Financial Officer
Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
Forward-looking statements contained in this news release are based on Westmoreland’s current expectations and assumptions regarding its business, the economy and other future conditions. Because forward-looking statements relate to the future, they are subject to inherent uncertainties, risks and changes in circumstances that are difficult to predict. Actual results may differ materially from those contemplated by the forward-looking statements. They are statements neither of historical fact nor guarantees or assurances of future performance. Possible events or factors that could cause actual results of performance to differ materially from those anticipated in Westmoreland’s forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Adverse impacts to Westmoreland’s business, financial condition, results of operations and cash flows resulting from the ongoing capital structure review, including the Company’s possible filing for bankruptcy protection under Chapter 11 of the United States Bankruptcy Code;
- Adverse impacts to Westmoreland’s business as a result of the audit opinion of its independent auditor containing an explanatory paragraph referencing Westmoreland’s conclusion that substantial doubt exists as to its ability to continue as a going concern;
- The impact of cross-acceleration and cross-default provisions between Westmoreland’s debt and debt held by WMLP;
- Westmoreland’s substantial level of indebtedness and its ability to adhere to financial covenants contained within the agreements governing indebtedness;
- Westmorelands ability to generate sufficient cash flow;
- Existing and future environmental legislation and regulation affecting both Westmoreland’s coal mining operations and its customers’ coal usage, governmental policies and taxes, including those aimed at reducing emissions of elements such as mercury, sulfur dioxides, nitrogen oxides, particulate matter or greenhouse gases;
- The concentration of revenues Westmoreland derives from a small number of customers, and the creditworthiness of those customers;
- Changes in Westmoreland’s post-retirement medical benefit and pension obligations resulting from market volatility or changes in assumptions regarding Westmoreland’s future expenses;
- Inaccuracies in Westmoreland’s estimates of its coal reserves, reclamation and/or mine closure obligations;
- Potential limitations in obtaining bonding capacity and/or increases in Westmoreland’s mining costs as a result of increased bonding expenses;
- Business interruptions, including unplanned equipment failures, geological, hydrological or other conditions, and competition and/or conflicts with other resource extraction activities, caused by external factors;
- Natural disasters and events, including blizzards, earthquakes, drought, floods, fire and storms, not all of which are covered by insurance;
- Potential title defects or loss of leasehold interests in Westmoreland’s properties, which could result in unanticipated costs or an inability to mine the properties;
- Risks associated with cybersecurity and data leakage;
- Westmoreland’s ability to continue to acquire and develop coal reserves through acquisition and to raise the associated capital necessary to fund its expansion;
- Changes in Westmoreland’s tax position resulting from ownership changes, Westmoreland’s interest in WMLP, and changes in tax law;
- Risks associated with Westmoreland’s interest in WMLP;
- The availability and costs of key supplies or commodities, such as transportation, key equipment and materials;
- Competition within Westmoreland’s industry and with producers of competing energy sources;
- Westmoreland’s relationships with, and other conditions affecting, Westmoreland’s customers, including how power prices and consumption patterns affect Westmoreland’s customers’ decisions to run their plants;
- Changes in the export and import markets for coal products;
- Extensive government regulations both in the US. and Canada, including existing and potential future legislation, treaties and regulatory requirements;
- The impacts of climate change concerns;
- Westmoreland’s ability to obtain and/or renew operating permits;
- The failure to meet the continued listing requirements of the Nasdaq Global Market and the potential inability to regain compliance with Nasdaq’s continued listing requirements;
- Westmoreland’s ability to effectively manage and integrate acquisitions;
- Other factors that are described under the heading “Risk Factors” found in Westmoreland’s reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including Westmoreland’s most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q.
Any forward-looking statements made by Westmoreland in this news release speak only as of the date on which it was made. Westmoreland undertakes no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise, except as may be required by law.