Stolt-Nielsen S.A. Reports Unaudited Results For the First Quarter of 2010
LONDON, April 7, 2010 - Stolt-Nielsen S.A. (Oslo B?rs: SNI) today reported unaudited results for the first quarter ended February 28, 2010. ?Net profit attributable to shareholders in the first quarter was $18.8 million, with revenue of $428.3 million, down from $22.3 million and $430.5 million respectively in the fourth quarter.
Highlights for the first quarter of 2010 compared with the fourth quarter of 2009 were:
???????? Stolt Tankers reported an operating profit of $3.0 million, down from $11.3 million, reflecting modestly lower trading results and the reversal in the fourth quarter of certain cost provisions from prior periods.
???????? The Stolt Tankers Joint Service Sailed-in Time-Charter Index was unchanged at 1.15.
???????? Stolthaven Terminals reported an operating profit of $15.5 million, up from $14.5 million, as additional capacity came onstream and throughput volumes increased.
???????? Stolt Tank Containers reported an operating profit of $10.6 million, up from $9.7 million, reflecting stable market conditions overall and the benefits of actions to reduce operating costs.
???????? Stolt Sea Farm reported an operating profit of $1.4 million, compared with a loss of $2.0 million.
???????? Stolt-Nielsen Gas commenced operations in the first quarter of 2010 and reported an operating loss of $2.7 million, due to poor market conditions, ship repositioning and prolonged waiting times.
Commenting on the Company's results, Mr. Niels G. Stolt-Nielsen, Chief Executive Officer of SNSA, said:
"Our first quarter results reflect the challenging market conditions that we have consistently communicated to the market over the past several quarters.? Results for Stolt Tankers' deep-sea trade were essentially flat, which was reflected by the sailed-in index, while results for our European and Southeast Asian regional fleets were disappointing.? Stolthaven Terminals and Stolt Tank Containers both reported higher operating profits driven by increased capacity and healthy demand.? Results at Stolt Sea Farm showed signs of improvement due to higher turbot prices."
"During the first quarter we took delivery of Stolt Avance, our first acquisition in the very large gas carrier (VLGC) segment. ?This ship will trade alongside the time-chartered ship Yuhsho in the spot market. ?Poor first-quarter operating results reflected the significant oversupply of ships, which has brought freight rates below voyage-cost levels. ?We expect this situation to improve as new Middle East gas production reaches the market later this year."
"We question the sustainability of the strong recovery in China once the stimulus is cut back. As the traditional Chinese export markets are buying less, China in turn becomes more dependent on its domestic demand, which will take some time to develop. ?We therefore repeat our concerns about the market fundamentals going forward. ?Our strategy is to continue to operate our businesses in a conservative manner, exercising tight control over our costs and capital expenditures."
 The Stolt Tankers Joint Service Sailed-in Time-Charter Index is an indexed measurement of the sailed-in rate for the Joint Service and was set at 1.00 in the first quarter of 1990 based on the average sailed-in time-charter result for the fleet at the time.? The sailed-in rate is a measure frequently used by shipping companies, which subtracts from the ships' operating revenue the variable costs associated with a voyage, primarily commissions, sublets, transshipments, port costs, and bunker fuel.