Boardwalk Pipeline Partners LP, (BWP)

Q2 2010 Earnings Call

July 26, 2010 9:00 a.m. ET


Rolf Gafvert – Chief Executive Officer, President, and Director

Jamie Buskill – Chief Financial Officer, Senior Vice President, and Treasurer

Allison McLean – Director of Investor Relations


Sharon Liu – Wells Fargo

Barrett Blaschke – RBC Capital Markets

Adam Rothenberg – Zimmer Lucas Partners

Scott Felgerman – Morgan Keegan



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Previous Statements by BWP
» Boardwalk Pipeline Partners, LP Q1 2010 Earnings Call Transcript
» Boardwalk Pipeline Partners LP Q4 2009 Earnings Call Transcript
» Boardwalk Pipeline Partners LP Q3 2009 Earnings Call Transcript

Good day, ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to the Q2 2010 Boardwalk Pipeline Partners, LP earnings conference call. My name is Tahisha and I will be your operator for today. (Operator instructions.) Also, this call is being recorded for replay purposes.

I would now like to turn the conference over to Ms. Allison McLean, Director of Investor Relations. Please proceed.

Allison McLean

Thank you, Tahisha. Good morning, everyone, and welcome to the Q2 2010 earnings call for Boardwalk Pipeline Partners, LP. I’m Allison McLean, and I’m pleased to be joined today by Mr. Rolf Gafvert, our CEO, and Mr. Jamie Buskill, our CFO. If you’d like a copy of the earnings release associated with this call please download it from our website at


Following our prepared remarks this morning we will turn the call over for your questions. We would like to remind you that this conference call will include the use of statements that are forward looking in nature. Statements in this earnings call related to matters that are not historical facts are forward looking statements. These statements are based on management’s beliefs and assumptions using currently available information and expectations. Actual results achieved by the company may differ materially from those projected in any forward looking statement. The company expressly disclaims any obligation to update or revise any forward looking statements made during this call.

I would also like to remind you that during this call today we may discuss certain non-GAAP financial measures, such as EBIDTA and distributable cash flow. With regard to such financial measures, please refer to our earnings release for a reconciliation to the most comparable GAAP measures.

Now I’d like to turn the call over to Mr. Rolf Gafvert.

Rolf Gafvert

Thank you, Allison. Good morning, everyone, and thank you for joining us today. I hope all of you have had a chance to review both the press releases we issued earlier this morning. We are pleased to announce a quarterly distribution to unit holders of $0.51 per unit, a ½ cent increase over last quarter. Distributions to unit holders have increased each quarter since our initial public offering in 2005.

I will now provide an update on our business, and then Jamie will discuss our financial performance in greater detail. I discussed in April that basis spreads between differing receipt and delivery locations on our systems had narrowed, affecting the transportation rates we were able to charge in certain markets. These trends have negatively impacted our contract renewals, and revenues from our interruptible and short-term firm transportation services, and future revenues may continue to be negatively impacted.

Capacity available on a short-term basis will decrease as long-term capacity commitments on our recently-completed pipeline expansion projects increase over the next 12 to 18 months. However, our contract renewals remain subject to basis spread volatility, and some of our capacity will continue to be available for sale on a short-term or interruptible basis, and that capacity will also be dependent upon basis spreads.

Turning to the progress we are making on our growth projects, our Haynesville and Clarence projects, both driven by supply growth from the Haynesville shale, are proceeding as planned and we anticipate these projects will be placed in service on time and within budget. The Haynesville project has been approved by the FERC and is under construction with a Q4 2010 anticipated in-service date. The Clarence compression project, which remains subject to FERC approval, has an anticipated in-service date of late 2011.

The Eagle Ford shale is an emerging supply source located approximately 50 miles from our pipeline system in south Texas. As I mentioned last quarter, due to the high content of natural gas liquids that accompany the gas stream in the Eagle Ford, many producers are focused on the area. In June we announced that Southcross Energy and Boardwalk plan to leverage existing assets in south Texas in order to provide infrastructure solutions to natural gas producers in the Eagle Ford. As part of that project, we plan to modify an existing section of Gulf South’s 30” pipeline from Refugio, Texas, to Fort Bend County, Texas, so that condensate-rich Eagle Ford shale gas can be accepted into that pipeline segment.

In addition, Boardwalk continues to pursue other Eagle Ford growth opportunities. We’re also pursuing opportunities to grow our transportation storage business. Today Boardwalk serves approximately 40 natural gas-fired power plants in ten states. We are currently pursuing opportunities to serve power generators who are replacing old, inefficient coal plants and simple cycle, gas-fired combustion turbines with highly efficient combined-cycle gas generation.

That concludes my overview for Boardwalk. I would now like to turn the call over to Jamie, who will share with you the financial results for the Q2.

Jamie Buskill

Thanks, Rolf, and good morning, everyone. Operating revenues for the Q2 of 2010 were $257 million, an increase of $56 million or 27% from $201 million from the comparable period in 2009. The increase was driven by transportation revenues from our pipeline expansion project, partially offset by lower interruptible and short-term firm transportation services due to lower basis spreads, and a ramp up of firm agreements.

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