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Last updateΠαρ, 14 Δεκ 2018 6am

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STEALTHGAS: Revenues increase

STEALTHGASPLOIO

STEALTHGAS INC. (NASDAQ: GASS), a ship-owning company primarily serving the liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) sector of the international shipping industry, announced today its unaudited financial and operating results for the third quarter and nine months results ended September 30, 2018.

OPERATIONAL AND FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS
• Operational utilization of 96.1% in Q3 18’ (95.4% in Q3 17’) in spite of weak seasonal period combined with an unexpected slowdown of the Asian LPG market.
• Almost 15% reduction of commercial off hire days in Q3 18’ compared to Q3 17’.
• About 84% of fleet days secured on period charters for the remainder of 2018 and 59% for 2019, with approximately $151 million in contracted revenues for all subsequent periods.
• Revenues of $42.7 million in Q3 18’, an increase of $4.2 million compared to Q3 17’.
• Adjusted EBITDA of $16.4 million in Q3 18’, compared to $15.3 million in Q3 17’.
• Low gearing, as debt to assets stands at 42.9% in spite of our capital expansion while net debt to assets ratio is as low as 36.8%.
• Cash and cash equivalents of $64.8 million an increase of $13.0 million compared to year end 2017.
Third Quarter 2018 Results:
• Revenues for the three months ended September 30, 2018 amounted to $42.7 million, an increase of $4.2 million, or 10.9%, compared to revenues of $38.5 million for the three months ended September 30, 2017, mainly as a result of improved market rates that led to an increase of both our time charter revenues and spot revenues compared to the same period of last year.
• Voyage expenses and vessels’ operating expenses for the three months ended September 30, 2018 were $5.8 million and $15.6 million respectively, compared to $3.7 million and $15.1 million respectively, for the three months ended September 30, 2017.The $2.1 million increase in voyage expenses was attributed to a quarter on quarter increase of spot days by 25.0% and a 44.6% rise in oil prices which affected the levels of our bunker costs. The 3.3% increase in vessels’ operating expenses compared to the same period of 2017, in spite of the net reduction in the average number of our owned vessels by two, was mostly due to the operation of the three new large LPG semi refrigerated vessels that were not in our fleet in the same period of last year and increased maintenance and repairs costs faced this quarter for three of our small LPG vessels.
• Charter hire expenses for the three months ended September 30, 2018 and 2017 were $1.8 million and $0.9 million, respectively. The $0.9 million increase in charter hire expenses was mainly due to the addition of one chartered in vessel in the first quarter of 2018.
• Drydocking costs for the three months ended September 30, 2018 and 2017 were $0.8 million and $0.6 million, respectively. The costs for the third quarter of 2018 corresponded to the drydocking of two LPG vessels, while in the same period of 2017 the Company completed the drydocking of one LPG vessel.
• Depreciation for the three months ended September 30, 2018 was $10.1 million, a $0.3 million increase from $9.8 million for the same period of last year mostly due to the addition of the three new 22,000 cbm semi-refrigerated LPG vessels.
• Included in the third quarter 2018 results were net gain from interest rate derivative instruments of $0.02 million compared to a net loss of $0.08 million incurred in the same period of last year. Interest received from interest rate derivative instruments amounted to $0.02 million compared to interest of $0.08 million paid in the same period of last year. The net gain from interest rate derivative instruments and the reduction of interest paid on derivatives, are an outcome of the increase in LIBOR rates.
• The Company realized a $0.5 million loss on sale of three vessels in the three months ended September 30, 2018.
• The Company recorded an impairment loss of $0.6 million for the three months ended September 30, 2018 for three of its vessels which have been classified as held for sale. For the three months ended September 30, 2017, the Company had recorded an impairment loss of $3.2 million for four of its oldest vessels, two of which have been classified as held for sale.
• Interest and finance costs for the three months ended September 30, 2018 were $6.1 million compared to $4.4 million in the same period of 2017. This increase of $1.7 million is attributed both to the increase in our bank debt and also to an increase of LIBOR rates.
• As a result of the above, for the three months ended September 30, 2018, the Company reported a net loss of $0.8 million, compared to a net loss of $2.3 million for the three months ended September 30, 2017. The weighted average number of shares for the three months ended September 30, 2018 was 39.9 million compared to 39.8 million for the same period of 2017. Loss per share, basic and diluted, for the three months ended September 30, 2018 amounted to $0.02 compared to loss per share of $0.06 for the same period of last year.
• Adjusted net income was $0.3 million or $0.01 earnings per share for the three months ended September 30, 2018 compared to adjusted net income of $1.1 million or $0.03 earnings per share for the same period of last year.
• EBITDA for the three months ended September 30, 2018 amounted to $15.3 million. Reconciliations of Adjusted Net Income, EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA to Net Loss are set forth below.
• An average of 51.3 vessels were owned by the Company during the three months ended September 30, 2018, compared to 52.9 vessels for the same period of 2017.

Nine Months 2018 Results:
• Revenues for the nine months ended September 30, 2018, amounted to $125.8 million, an increase of $9.9 million, or 8.5%, compared to revenues of $115.9 million for the nine months ended September 30, 2017, primarily due to improved market conditions.
• Voyage expenses and vessels’ operating expenses for the nine months ended September 30, 2018 were $15.7 million and $45.8 million, respectively, compared to $11.8 million and $44.4 million for the nine months ended September 30, 2017. The $3.9 million increase in voyage expenses was mainly due to the higher bunker prices prevailing in the nine months of 2018 compared to the same period of 2017. The $1.4 million increase in vessels’ operating expenses, in spite of the net reduction of the average number of our owned vessels by one , was mainly driven by the operation of three additional new 22,000 cbm semi-refrigerated LPG vessels not yet delivered in the same period of last year.
• Charter hire expenses for the nine months ended September 30, 2018 and 2017 were $4.4 million and $2.6 million, respectively. The $1.8 million increase in charter hire expenses was mainly due to the addition of one chartered in vessel in the first quarter of 2018.
• Drydocking Costs for the nine months ended September 30, 2018 and 2017 were $3.0 million and $2.5 million, respectively, representing the costs of 6 and 5 vessels drydocked, in each respective period.
• Depreciation for the nine months ended September 30, 2018, was $31.1 million, a $1.8 million increase from $29.3 million for the same period of last year, in spite of the net reduction of the average number of our owned vessels by one, due to the addition of three 22,000 cbm semi-refrigerated vessels.
• Included in the nine months of 2018 results were net loss from interest rate derivative instruments of $0.02 million compared to a net loss of $0.3 million incurred in the same period of last year. Interest paid on interest rate swap arrangements amounted to $0.06 million compared to interest of $0.3 million paid in the same period of last year. The reduction of net losses from interest rate derivative instruments, including the reduction of interest paid on derivatives, are an outcome of the increase in LIBOR rates.
• The Company recorded an impairment loss of $8.2 million in the nine months of 2018 for seven of its vessels, three of which have been classified as held for sale as of September 30, 2018. With regards to the additional four vessels for which we incurred impairment charges, one was delivered to her new owners in the second quarter of 2018 while the remaining three were delivered to their new owners in the third quarter of 2018.
• Interest and finance costs for the nine months ended September 30, 2018 were $17.3 million compared to $12.2 million in the same period of 2017. This increase of $5.1 million is attributed to the increase in our bank debt and to an increase of LIBOR rates.
• As a result of the above, the Company reported a net loss for the nine months ended September 30, 2018 of $7.0 million, compared to a net loss of $2.0 million for the nine months ended September 30, 2017. The average number of shares outstanding as of September 30, 2018 was 39.9 million compared to 39.8 million, for the same period of last year. Loss per share for the nine months ended September 30, 2018 amounted to $0.17 compared to loss per share of $0.05 for the same period of last year.
• Adjusted net income was $1.9 million, or $0.05 per share, for the nine months ended September 30, 2018 compared to adjusted net income of $4.7 million, or $0.12 per share, for the same period of last year.
• EBITDA for the nine months ended September 30, 2018 amounted to $41.0 million. Reconciliations of Adjusted Net Income, EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA to Net Income are set forth below. An average of 51.8 vessels were owned by the Company during the nine months ended September 30, 2018, compared to 53.1 vessels for the same period of 2017.
• As of September 30, 2018, cash and cash equivalents amounted to $64.8 million and total debt amounted to $454.7 million. During the nine months ended September 30, 2018 debt repayments amounted to $45.2 million.
Fleet Update Since Previous Announcement
The Company announced the conclusion of the following chartering arrangements:
• A three month time charter for its 2015 built LPG carrier, the Eco Enigma, to an international trading house until January 2019.
• A two month time charter for its 2011 built LPG carrier, the Gas Elixir, to an international trading house until January 2019.
• A six month time charter for its 2001 built chartered in LPG carrier, the Gas Cathar, to an international trading house until July 2019.
• A one year time charter for its 2017 built LPG carrier, the Eco Frost, to an international trading house until October 2019.
• A one year time charter for its 2015 built LPG carrier, the Eco Czar, to an Oil Major until January 2020.
• A one year time charter for its 2001 built LPG carrier, the Gas Spirit, to an Oil Major until November 2019.
• A one year time charter for its 2014 built LPG carrier, the Eco Invictus, to an Oil Major until November 2019.
• A one year time charter for its 2015 built LPG carrier, the Eco Galaxy, to an international LPG trader until December 2019.
• A one year time charter for its 2014 built LPG carrier, the Eco Corsair, to an international LPG trader until December 2019.
• A one year time charter for its 2006 built LPG carrier, the Gas Ethereal to an international trading house until December 2019.
• A one year time charter extension for its 2011 built LPG carrier, the Gas Myth to an Oil Major until January 2020.
With these charters, the Company has currently total contracted revenues of approximately $151 million. Total anticipated voyage days of our fleet is 84% covered for the remainder of 2018 and 59% for 2019.
Board Chairman Michael Jolliffe Commented
A temporary slowdown of the Asian LPG market was the main driver of our third quarter’s performance. The third quarter of the year usually has a soft element due to seasonal factors but in addition this quarter market conditions in Asia were less favorable than usual as we witnessed some charterers not renewing time charter vessels in direct continuation thus leaving more than usual vessels to operate in the spot market. This impacted our revenues. The market in Asia has now corrected itself and time charter fixing has picked up, as is evident from the eleven new time charters we have concluded since our last earnings report.
The most important aspect of our segment, however, is that the fundamentals, that is increasing LPG production and consumption, a very low orderbook, and an ageing global fleet, continue to drive our market. We feel optimistic for the couple of years ahead as rates are in our opinion likely to increase even further.
StealthGas as the largest owner in the sector with a relatively young fleet is well positioned to seize this opportunity. We have concluded our fleet expansion program, enhanced our cash base, have agreed to sell seven mostly older vessels since the beginning of 2018 and are therefore ready to create value from our market’s significant potential upside.
About STEALTHGAS INC.
StealthGas Inc. is a ship-owning company primarily serving the liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) sector of the international shipping industry. StealthGas Inc. currently has a fleet of 50 vessels. The fleet comprises of 46 LPG carriers, including two chartered in LPG vessels, with a total capacity of 302,662 cubic meters (cbm),three M.R. product tankers and one Aframax oil tanker with a total capacity of 255,804 deadweight tons (dwt). StealthGas Inc.’s shares are listed on the NASDAQ Global Select Market and trade under the symbol “GASS”.

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