Diana Shipping's CEO Discusses Q1 2012 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

Diana Shipping Inc. (DSX)

Q1 2012 Earnings Call

May 3, 2012 9:00 am ET


Edward Nebb – Investor Relations, Comm-Counsellors, LLC

Simeon P. Palios – Chief Executive Officer

Anastassis Stacey Margaronis – President

Andreas Michalopoulos – Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer


Michael Webber – Wells Fargo Securities, LLC

Erik Nikolai Stavseth – Arctic Securities

Brandon R. Oglenski – Barclays Capital Equity Research

Sal Vitale – Sterne, Agee



Greetings and welcome to Diana Shipping Inc.’s First Quarter 2012 Conference Call and Webcast. At this time, all participants are in a listen-only mode. A brief question-and-answer session will follow the formal presentation. (Operator Instructions) As a reminder, this conference is being recorded.

It is now my pleasure to introduce your host, Mr. Edward Nebb, Investor Relations Advisor for Diana Shipping. Thank you. Mr. Nebb, you may begin.

Edward Nebb

Thank you, Louis. Hello, everyone and welcome to the Diana Shipping Incorporated 2012 first quarter conference call.

The members of the Diana Shipping management team who are with us today include Mr. Simeon Palios, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer; Mr. Anastassis Margaronis, President; Mr. Andreas Michalopoulos, Chief Financial Officer; Mr. Ioannis Zafirakis, Executive Vice-President and Secretary; and Ms. Maria Dede, Chief Accounting Officer.

Before management begins their remarks, let me briefly summarize the Safe Harbor notice, which is attached as part of the new release. Certain statements made during this conference call, which are not statements of historical fact are forward-looking statements and made pursuant to the Safe Harbor Provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act.

Forward-looking statements are based on assumptions, expectations, projections, intentions and beliefs as the future events that may or may not prove to be accurate. For a description of the risks, uncertainties, and other factors that may cause future results to differ from what is expressed in the forward-looking statements, please refer to the company’s filings with the SEC.

And with that, let me turn the call over to Mr. Simeon Palios, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.

Simeon P. Palios

Greetings, good morning and thank you for joining us today. During the 2012 first quarter Diana Shipping, Inc. continue to publish an elaborate revenue stream operated in a profitable manner and maintain a surely balancing at volatile industry conditions. We also made significant progress in our future expansion strategy, which is intended to position the company for future profitable growth. In February 2012, we took delivery of the newly built Los Angeles, a Newcastlemax Dry Bulk Carrier that was contracted in 2010.

Today, we also announced the delivery of Melia, a Panamax dry bulk carrier. In addition, we recently announced agreement to purchase two Ice Class Panamax dry bulk carriers; the delivery is anticipated during the fourth quarter of 2013. In total we have three vessels that are anticipated to be delivered in 2012, 2013.

The two Ice Class Panamax vessels as I just noted as well as a Newcastlemax new building that is anticipated to be delivered in few days. With these additions, the size of our fleet will increase to 30 vessels. The fleet is increasingly diversified including vessels scheduled for future delivery we will have 17 Panamax’s, one Post-Panamax, 8 Capesize and 2 Newcastlemax and 2 new building Ice Class Panamax vessels. Considering that we own 21 vessels at the time we announced our fleet investment strategy in 2008, these represents a very substantial progress in the expansion and diversification of our fleet. We’ll continue to manage our fleet in a responsible manner that promotes a balance of time-charter maturities and produces a predictable revenue stream.

Currently, our fixed revenue days are 89% for 2012. The majority of our vessels are chartered for periods ranging from 2013 to 2015 and beyond. We continue to enjoy excellent relationships with many of the industries strongest and most respected charters.

Turning now to some of the highlights of our results for the first quarter of 2012. The net income to Diana Shipping Inc. was US$20 million for 2012 first quarter compared to US$33.1 million a year ago. Time charter revenues for the latest quarter totaled US$57.6 million versus US$69.4 million a year ago. Time charter rates averaged US$24,276 for the 2012 first quarter compared with US$31,592 in the same period of 2011. We have maintained one of the strongest balances in our industry.

Our cash position at March 31, 2012 was approximately US$442 million or above US$69 million a year ago. We continue to operate with a very manageable degree of leverage. long-term debt including current portion was US$424.5 million compared to stockholder’s equity of US$1.2 billion.

Our solid financial position helps to ensure stability in a volatile market and this also support for continued growth initiatives. While one of that conditions persist in the dry bulk shipping industry, we will continue to pursue the strategies that we believe will deliver stable and profitable results in the near term and will contribute to our growth for the long-term. We will continue our program of selectively and gradually adding to our fleet as much acquisitions permit as to our prior vessels at attractive prices. We will operate our fleet according to balance and proven (inaudible) policies and promote, predict wherever you stream and enable us to sustain profitable operations. And we will continue to manage our balance sheet to provide financial flexibility, provide the capacity to support growth and maintain an acceptable degree of leverage.

With that, I will now turn the call over to our President, Stacey Margaronis for a perspective on industrial conditions. He will then be followed by our Chief Financial Officer, Andreas Michalopoulos who will provide a financial overview. Thank you.

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