EBITDA represents net income before interest (including loss on debt extinguishment), taxes, depreciation and amortization. EBITDA is presented because NRG considers it an important supplemental measure of its performance and believes debt-holders frequently use EBITDA to analyze operating performance and debt service capacity. EBITDA has limitations as an analytical tool, and you should not consider it in isolation, or as a substitute for analysis of our operating results as reported under GAAP. Some of these limitations are:
- EBITDA does not reflect cash expenditures, or future requirements for capital expenditures, or contractual commitments;
- EBITDA does not reflect changes in, or cash requirements for, working capital needs;
- EBITDA does not reflect the significant interest expense, or the cash requirements necessary to service interest or principal payments, on debt or cash income tax payments;
- Although depreciation and amortization are non-cash charges, the assets being depreciated and amortized will often have to be replaced in the future, and EBITDA does not reflect any cash requirements for such replacements; and
- Other companies in this industry may calculate EBITDA differently than NRG does, limiting its usefulness as a comparative measure.