London, England - April 6, 2006 - Stolt-Nielsen S.A. (NasdaqNM: SNSA; Oslo Stock Exchange: SNI) today reported results for the first quarter ended February 28, 2006.
Operating revenue of $382.5 million for the quarter, compared with operating revenue of $463.3 million for the same quarter last year ($346.1 million excluding the $117.2 million of operating revenue of Stolt Sea Farm (SSF) operations that were contributed to Marine Harvest as of April 29, 2005).
Income from continuing operations of $47.9 million for the quarter, compared with income from continuing operations of $24.0 million for the same quarter last year.
Stolt-Nielsen Transportation Group's (SNTG) results reflected a solid performance from all divisions but were negatively affected by continued high antitrust-related legal advisor expenses totaling $9.0 million for the current quarter.
The Stolt Tankers Joint Service Sailed-in Time-Charter Index increased to 1.30 from 1.29 in the same quarter last year but was down from 1.34 in the fourth quarter of 2005.
SSF's 25% share of Marine Harvest and interest income on the shareholder loan to Marine Harvest contributed a total of $8.2 million to net income. SSF's turbot operations continue to deliver solid results.
Highlights for the first quarter of 2006 included:
Commenting, Mr. Niels G. Stolt-Nielsen, CEO of SNSA, said:
"SNSA posted a solid result in the first quarter of 2006, as we continued to see healthy demand for SNTG's services and positive contributions from SSF's turbot operations.
"Looking ahead, we believe the fundamentals of the parcel tanker market remain positive, although we expect some volatility due to shifting trade patterns, new tonnage entering the market, and the impact of new IMO regulations. Our tank container business continues to post good results. Our terminal business is poised for further growth with our recently announced investments in two new terminals.
"The ruling by the Third Circuit panel, which reversed our victory in the District Court, is purely based on the constitutional law theory that the judiciary cannot enforce the executive branch's promise not to indict. The ruling from the Third Circuit panel clearly states that it was not based on the merits of our legal position as to the amnesty agreement. We have already won once on the legal merits of the amnesty agreement, and are fully committed to enforcing the DOJ's promises. We firmly believe we have not broken the amnesty agreement with the DOJ, and will explore all options open to the company so that it is protected under the agreement."
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