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Press release from CNW Group

Whistler Blackcomb Holdings Inc. reports fiscal 2012 second quarter and six months ended March 31, 2012 financial results

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Whistler Blackcomb Holdings Inc. reports fiscal 2012 second quarter and six months ended March 31, 2012 financial results03:00 EDT Wednesday, May 09, 2012WHISTLER, BC, May 9, 2012 /CNW/ - Whistler Blackcomb Holdings Inc. (TSX: WB) (the "Corporation") today reported financial results for the three and six months ended March 31, 2012.Highlights of the Periods:Growth from key destination markets resulted in a 20.6% and 22.6% increase in destination skier visits for the three and six months ended March 31, 2012, respectively.Increases in all key metrics including: revenue, EBITDA, effective ticket price ("ETP") and skier visits.Ongoing strength in regional market visitation reflects a new record for pre-committed revenue and continues to be a key performance driver.Strong net earnings before income tax of $51.8 million resulting in a 14.8%, or $6.7 million, increase in the six months ended March 31, 2012, compared to the same period in the prior year.Increased cash position with cash and cash equivalents of $70.4 million at the end of the period, representing a 20.5% year-over-year increase.Dave Brownlie, President and Chief Operating Officer of Whistler Blackcomb Holdings Inc. stated "Over the last 12 months our team has been focused on growing skier visits and revenue by driving increased destination skier visits and I am pleased with the results to date. Our fundamentals are strong and we have positive momentum for the remainder of the year and into fiscal 2013."FISCAL 2012 FIRST QUARTER AND SIX MONTH FINANCIAL RESULTSRevenue, Visits and Effective Ticket PriceRevenues reached $125.5 million and $174.6 million for the three and six months ended March 31, 2012, respectively, which represents increases of $12.4 million, or 11.0%, and $14.8 million, or 9.2%, respectively, over the same periods in the prior year. The increases were primarily a result of increased destination guests and associated revenue per visit.All major categories of resort revenue increased during the periods as a result of increased destination visits, which typically result in increased spend per visitor.As of March 31, 2012, total pass and card sales reached $41.5 million - a new record for Whistler Blackcomb, exceeding last year's record sales to March 31, 2011.Skier visits were 1.338 million and 1.799 million for the three and six months ended March 31, 2012 which represents increases of 0.113 million, or 9.2%, and 0.115 million, or 6.8%, respectively, over the same periods in the prior year. Management estimates that the increases were driven entirely by destination visits.ETP was $51.31 and $50.46 for the three and six months ended March 31, 2012, respectively, which represents increases of $0.96, or 1.9%, and $1.35, or 2.8%, respectively, over the same periods in the prior year.Operating Expenses, SG&A Expenses and EBITDA EBITDA increased by 8.3% and 12.5% to $69.4 million and $80.1 million in the three and six months ended March 31, 2012, respectively.The increase in EBITDA was driven by the increase in revenues described above net of an increase in operating expenses and selling, general and administrative expenses which were required to support the increase in revenues.Depreciation and Amortization and Interest ExpenseDepreciation and amortization expense was $9.7 million and $19.3 million for the three and six months ended March 31, 2012 which is relatively unchanged from the same periods in the prior year, respectively.Interest expense, net was $4.4 million and $9.0 million for the three and six months ended March 31, 2012, respectively, which represents increases of $0.1 million and $2.1 million, respectively, over the same periods in the prior year. Of the increase in the six months ended March 31, 2012 over the same period in the prior year, $2.0 million relates to the fact that the prior year only includes interest from November 9, 2010 to March 31, 2011 whereas the six months ended March 31, 2012 includes a full six months of interest.Earnings Per ShareNet earnings before tax increased by 13.0% and 14.8% or $6.4 million and $6.7 million in the three and six months ended March 31, 2012 over the same periods in the prior year, respectively.Net earnings per common share (basic and diluted) was $0.81 and $0.76 for the three and six months ended March 31, 2012, respectively, compared to net earnings per common share (basic and diluted) of $1.02 and $1.13 in the three months ended March 31, 2011 and the period from November 9, 2010 to March 31, 2011, respectively.  The net change in net earnings per common share is primarily due to higher non-cash deferred income tax expense in the current year compared to the periods ended March 31, 2011, primarily due to timing of recording deferred income tax benefit and expense in the prior year.  Additionally, the Partnerships' net loss of $8.5 million from October 1, 2010 to November 8, 2010, prior to its acquisition by the Corporation on November 9, 2010, is not included in the Corporation's net earnings from November 9, 2010 to March 31, 2011.The Corporation completed its initial public offering and its acquisition of a 75% interest in the Partnerships on November 9, 2010.  Accordingly, earnings per share for the comparative period is calculated using the Corporation's net earnings for the period from November 9, 2010 to March 31, 2011.Cash and Cash EquivalentsThe Corporation had $70.4 million of cash and cash equivalents at March 31, 2012, an increase of $11.9 million, or 20.5%, over the balance of $58.5 million at March 31, 2011.Detailed financial results of the Corporation and Management's Discussion and Analysis as of May 8, 2012 ("MD&A") can be found on SEDAR at www.sedar.com and the Corporation's website at www.whistlerblackcombholdings.com.Conference Call InformationManagement will conduct a conference call on May 9, 2012 at 10:30am (Eastern Time) to review the Corporation's fiscal 2012 second quarter results. The call can be accessed by dialing 1.866.383.7989 (Canada and US) or 1.617.597.5328 (International) prior to the start of the call. The access code is 94532608. A replay of the call will be available until May 16, 2012 and can be accessed at 1.888.286.8010 or 1.617.801.6888 (International). The access code for the replay is 48447629. The call will also be archived for a period of 60 days following the call in the Quarterly Financials section of the Corporation's website:  www.whistlerblackcombholdings.com.ABOUT WHISTLER BLACKCOMB HOLDINGS INC.Whistler Blackcomb Holdings Inc. owns a 75% interest in each of Whistler Mountain Resort Limited Partnership and Blackcomb Skiing Enterprises Limited Partnership, which, together, carry on the four season mountain resort business located in the Resort Municipality of Whistler, British Columbia.  Whistler Blackcomb, the official alpine skiing venue for the Olympic Winter Games, is situated in the Resort Municipality of Whistler located in the Coast Mountains of British Columbia 125 kilometres (78 miles) from Vancouver, British Columbia. North America's premier four-season mountain resort, Whistler Mountain and Blackcomb Mountain are two side-by-side mountains, connected by the world record-breaking PEAK 2 PEAK Gondola, which combined offer over 200 marked runs, over 8,000 acres of terrain, 14 alpine bowls, three glaciers, receive on average over 1,170 centimetres (460 inches) of snow annually, and offer one of the longest ski seasons in North America. In the summer, Whistler Blackcomb offers a variety of activities, including hiking and biking trails, the Whistler Mountain Bike Park, and sightseeing on the PEAK 2 PEAK Gondola. Whistler Blackcomb Holdings Inc. is listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol "WB".  For more information, visit www.whistlerblackcombholdings.com. Additional information related to the Corporation is available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.BASIS OF PRESENTATIONThe Corporation's activities began on November 9, 2010, the date of its initial public offering and its acquisition of a 75% interest in each of Whistler Mountain Resort Limited Partnership and Blackcomb Skiing Enterprises Limited Partnership.  For the purposes of certain management quarterly comparisons, results for the three and six months ended March 31, 2012 have been compared to results for the three and six months ended March 31, 2011.  Results for the six months ended March 31, 2011 are comprised of the Corporation's results from November 9, 2010 to March 31, 2011 and the Partnerships' results for the period from October 1, 2010 to November 8, 2010.ADOPTION OF IFRSBeginning on October 1, 2011, the Corporation adopted International Financial Reporting Standards ("IFRS").  Prior period results, including non-IFRS measures, have been adjusted to reflect the adoption of IFRS effective November 9, 2010.  See the Corporation's condensed interim consolidated financial statements and MD&A for more information.NON-IFRS MEASURES This press release makes reference to certain financial measures other than those prescribed by IFRS.  These non-IFRS measures are not recognized under IFRS, do not have a standardized meaning prescribed by IFRS and are therefore unlikely to be comparable to similar measures presented by other companies.  These non-IFRS measures, which include EBITDA, which is defined as consolidated net earnings (loss) (including net earnings (loss) attributable to the Non-Controlling Interest) before finance income (expense) net, income tax expense (benefit), depreciation and amortization, are provided to the reader as additional information to complement IFRS measures and to further understand the Corporation's results of operations from management's perspective and as a supplemental measure of performance that highlights trends in the business that may not otherwise be apparent when relying solely on IFRS financial measures.  Such non-IFRS measures should not be considered in isolation or as a substitute for analysis of financial information reported under IFRS. Readers should refer to the Corporation's annual information form dated December 13, 2011 (the "AIF") and MD&A, which are available on our website and on SEDAR at www.sedar.com, for additional details regarding the determination of these non-IFRS measures and reconciliation to financial information reported under IFRS.CAUTIONARY NOTE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTSThis press release may contain forward-looking statements or information, within the meaning of applicable Canadian securities laws, including, but not limited to, the expectations, plans, goals, objectives, assumptions, information or statements about future events or conditions which may prove to be incorrect. Although the Corporation believes that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements and information are reasonable, undue reliance should not be placed on forward-looking statements because the Corporation can give no assurance that such expectations will prove to be correct. The forward-looking statements are based on the estimates and assumptions made by the management in light of its experience and perception of current conditions and expected future developments, and are subject to a number of significant risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated. Such risks and uncertainties include, among others, general economic, business and market conditions and other risks as are detailed in the AIF. Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or should assumptions underlying the forward-looking statements prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those described herein as anticipated, believed, estimated or expected. These forward-looking statements are made as of the date of this press release, and the Corporation has no intention and assumes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements to reflect new events or circumstances, except as required by applicable Canadian securities laws.WHISTLER BLACKCOMB HOLDINGS INC.  Condensed Interim Consolidated Statements of Comprehensive Income (Loss)(Unaudited)(in thousands, except per share amounts)                        Three months Three months Six months November 9, October 1,  ended ended ended 2010 to  2010 to  March 31, March 31, March 31, March 31,  November 8,  2012 2011 2012 2011  2010  (Successor) (Successor) (Successor) (Successor)  (Predecessor)           Resort revenue $125,462$ 113,034$ 174,595$ 155,702 $ 3,902           Real estate revenue  -  -  - 240  -  125,462 113,034 174,596 155,942  3,902Operating expenses  48,180 43,939 79,189 67,142  8,246           Depreciation and amortization  9,734 10,836 19,267 17,684  1,510           Selling, general and administration  7,907 4,987 15,300 9,379  2,574           Real estate expenses   - 18 - 144  53           Acquisition-related costs  - - - 1,070  -  65,821 59,780 113,756 95,419  12,383Earnings (loss) from operations  59,641 53,254 60,839 60,523  (8,481)          Disposal gains (losses)  37 2 (26) 6  (63)          Finance income (expense), net  (4,405) (4,341) (8,991) (6,874)  19Net earnings (loss) before income tax  55,273 48,915 51,822 53,655  (8,525)           Income tax (expense) benefit  (10,436) 1,957 (9,780) 3,212  -Net earnings (loss) and comprehensive income (loss) $44,837 $ 50,872$ 42,042$ 56,867 $ (8,525)           Net earnings (loss) and comprehensive income (loss):           Attributable to Whistler BlackcombHoldings Inc. shareholders $30,876$ 38,463$ 28,841$ 42,935   Attributable to non-controlling interest   13,961 12,409 13,201 13,932   $ 44,837$ 50,872$ 42,042$ 56,867             Earnings (loss) per share             Basic $ 0.81$ 1.02$ 0.76$ 1.13     Diluted  $ 0.81$ 1.02$ 0.76$ 1.13             Weighted average number of common shares outstanding             Basic   37,900 37,868 37,884 37,861     Diluted   37,945 37,882 37,943 37,870  WHISTLER BLACKCOMB HOLDINGS INC.  Condensed Interim Consolidated Statements of Financial Position(Unaudited)(Expressed in thousands)             March 31, September 30, November 9,    2012 2011 2010Assets                 Current assets:        Cash and cash equivalents$70,446$30,023$1 Accounts receivable 10,963 3,204 - Inventory   9,872 13,314 - Prepaid expenses  2,599 3,922 - Notes receivable   303 296 -    94,183 50,759 1Notes receivable   2,809 2,946 -Property, buildings and equipment  335,338 343,108 -Property held for development 9,244 9,244 -Intangible assets   330,981 337,933 -Goodwill    135,574 135,574 -   $908,129$879,564$1         Liabilities and Shareholders' Equity               Current liabilities:        Accounts payable and accrued liabilities $29,879$23,955$- Deferred revenue  14,431 18,804 -    44,310 42,759 -Long-term debt   256,446 255,812 -Deferred income tax liability  19,330 10,225 -Equity          Whistler Blackcomb Holdings Inc. shareholders' equity      Preferred shares; no par value; unlimited      number authorized; nil outstanding       Common shares; no par value; unlimited      number authorized; 37,908 outstanding;      (September 30, 2011 - 38,868) 441,476 440,994 1 Additional paid-in capital 498 654 - Deficit  (242) (10,613) - Total Whistler Blackcomb Holdings Inc.       shareholders' equity  441,732 431,035 1 Non-controlling interest 146,311 139,733 -    588,043 570,768 1   $908,129$879,564$1 WHISTLER BLACKCOMB HOLDINGS INC.   Condensed Interim Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows(Unaudited)(in thousands)             Three months Three months Six months November 9, October 1,  ended ended ended 2010 to 2010 to  March 31, March 31, March 31, March 31, November 8,  2012 2011 2012 2011 2010  (Successor) (Successor) (Successor) (Successor) (Predecessor)Cash provided by (used in):                     Operations:          Net earnings (loss)$44,837$50,872$42,042$56,867$(8,525) Items not involving cash:           Depreciation and amortization 9,734 10,836 19,267 17,684 1,510 Disposal losses (gains) (37) (2) 26 (6) 63 Share-based compensation 118 204 326 540 - Amortization of debt issuance costs 316 311 634 490 - Deferred income tax expense (benefit) 9,679 (2,137) 9,105 (3,393) -  64,647 60,084 71,400 72,182 (6,952) Changes in non-cash operating working capital (25,325) (28,939) (1,443) (14,739) 14,272   39,322 31,145 69,957 57,443 7,320           Financing:           Dividends paid on common shares  (9,240) (5,314) (18,470) (5,314) - Distributions to non-controlling interest (3,313) (3,310) (6,623) (66,278) - Proceeds on issuance of common shares - - - 300,000 - Share issuance costs - (23) - (17,883) - Proceeds on issuance of long-term debt - - - 261,000 - Debt issuance costs - - - (6,369) - Due to partner - - - (10,661) 349 Distributions to partners - - - - (16,794)   (12,553) (8,647) (25,093) 454,495 (16,445)           Investing:           Expenditures on property, buildings and equipment (797) (1,065) (4,935) (2,652) (728) Proceeds from sale of property and equipment 111 - 364 - - Repayment of notes receivable 126 9 130 183 8 Business acquisition, net of cash acquired - - - (451,007) -   (560) (1,056) (4,441) (453,476) (720)           Increase (decrease) in cash and cash equivalents 26,209 21,442 40,423 58,462 (9,845)Cash and cash equivalents, beginning of period 44,237 37,020 30,023 - 19,681Cash and cash equivalents, end of period$70,446$58,462$70,446$58,462$9,836   For further information: Jeremy RocheSenior Manager, Investor Relations Whistler Blackcomb Holdings Inc. jroche@whistlerblackcomb.com     Ph: 604-938-7376