Tuesday, June 20,
Net income for the six months ended May 31, 2000 was $375.5 million ($0.61 Diluted EPS) on revenues of $1.70 billion, compared to net income of $361.1 million ($0.59 Diluted EPS) on revenues of $1.54 billion for the same period in 1999.
Commenting on the second quarter results, chairman and CEO Micky Arison stated that earnings were constrained by a combination of lower net revenue yields and significantly higher fuel costs.
"Although there was some pressure on cruise pricing, we continued to attract a record number of first-time cruisers and grew the number of passengers carried by more than 100,000 -- the largest quarterly increase in passenger counts in recent history. This resulted in occupancy levels increasing by 2.4 percent to 102.3 percent during the second quarter," Arison noted.
Looking to the remainder of the fiscal year, the company expects that net revenue yields for the second half of 2000 will be somewhat less than last year and that earnings per share for the full year will be slightly higher than last year.
Because existing cruise pricing is providing unprecedented value to the vacationing public, the company attracted a record number of first-time cruisers during the first half of 2000. The company believes that this broadening of its customer base better positions it to grow its earnings in the future. Arison also pointed out that the industry should benefit from favorable demographic trends in the coming years as more people move into the 40 to 60 age range, a prime age group for cruising. "A larger audience of first-time cruisers, combined with a growing number of repeat passengers brought about by strong levels of customer satisfaction, should produce a large number of guests to fill our new order book of 15 ships scheduled for delivery over the next five years," he said. Arison added that the company remains confident of its ability to expand the cruise market during this period and to create greater value for its shareholders.
In February 2000, Carnival's board of directors
authorized the repurchase of up to $1 billion of its common stock.
Since then, the company has repurchased 14.3 million shares of
its common stock at a cost of approximately $340 million.
MoD orders survey vessels
The ships, to be named HMS ECHO and HMS ENTERPRISE will be built under sub-contract at Appledore Shipbuilders in Appledore, Devon and are due to enter service in 2002 and 2003.
Construction work is expected to sustain about 800 jobs in the shipyard and its local suppliers over the next three years."
The contract also covers the support of the ships throughout their 25 year service life with the Royal Navy.
The 3,500 tonne ships will be equipped with the latest survey systems, including multi-beam echo sounders and modern side sonars, as well as advanced navigation and communication systems. Each of the ships will be available for operations for over 330 days each year - a 50 percent improvement on older existing vessels. Considerably improved stability at sea means they will be able to carry out survey work for 90 percent of the year in seas much rougher than before.
As well as undertaking specialist surveying tasks, the ships will work in world-wide front-line operational roles, including supporting mine warfare and amphibious operations necessary to the long-term effectiveness of the Royal Navy.
The project is being managed by the Survey
Vessels Integrated Project Team, based at the U.K. Defence Procurement
Agency Headquarters at Abbey Wood, Bristol. The team is lead
by Ian Wakeling.
NSD signs agreement with John Crane-Lips
Under the cooperation agreement, Wärtsilä
NSD, with 560 marine support people worldwide, will act as prime
contractor to shipyards for total marine propulsion power systems.
It will provide diesel engine based prime movers and gearboxes
while John Crane-Lips will supply on-board propulsion and sealing
systems. The co-operation agreement tragets the entire
Both Wärtsilä NSD and John Crane-Lips
retain the right to market their own product ranges independently
where customers to not wish to purchase total marine power systems.
Marine Engines to upgrade gear plant
"We' ve taken a 20-year step forward
with this large investment in new equipment, which translates
into long-term value such as greater grinding accuracy and gear
reliability," said Bill Gehr, Manager Gear Programs for
GE Marine Engines. He added that GE will be able to produce quiet,
more reliable gearing with enhanced load capacity by holding
tooth tolerances within .00005 inches --about 1/60th the size
of a human hair.
Plans are underway for GE to continue investing
in its Lynn Gear plant. By the end of 2000, GE expects to install
a CNC 1.6-meter hobber and by mid-2001 will install a 4.0-meter
to expand Panama Canal
The expansion, which has yet to be approved, would allow the transit of post-Panamax-size vessels and would increase ship traffic by 36% to 51 ships per day by 2020 and another 31% to an average of 67.2 ships per day by 2060, compared with 37.3 transits today.
The estimated total cost is much less than earlier studies which, in 1993, put the construction cost of new locks and modernization program at up to $10 billion.
Financing for the expansion project would likely come from a mix of self-financing, increased Canal tolls and revenues and international bond placements.
wins Spanish LNG import terminal contract
The contract totals 203 million euros (about $180 million) and SN Technigaz's portion is 81 million euros. It will be performed through a joint venture between SN Technigaz (leader with 40%), Initec (33%) and Sofregaz (27%). This turnkey contract includes the design, engineering, procurement, supervision and construction of the plant, including commissioning and start-up of the installations, as well as training of operating and maintenance personnel.
The LNG terminal will consist of a jetty with the capacity to receive methane carriers of 135,000 cubic meters, two storage tanks with a capacity of 150,000 cubic meters each and a regasification plant able to generate 2.7 billion cubic meters of natural gas per annum.