BOURBON Cites Strong First Half Boosted by Growth in Offshore

Jacques de Chateauvieux, Chairman and Chief Executive of BOURBON, said, "BOURBON's good results are a positive step along the road outlined in the strategic plan Horizon 2012. They show the beneficial effect of medium and long-term shipping contracts, which smooth out the consequences of market fluctuations. Our strategy, which is to invest in a fleet of modern offshore vessels to bring down customers’ costs, results in a high utilization rate during periods of generally reduced demand."

First half 2009 results reflect continued organic growth in the Offshore Division, which accounted for 85% of capital employed as of June 30, 2009.

Revenues came in at €482.1 million, up 11.2% over the first half of 2008 at current exchange rates.

EBITDA of €176.6 million surged by 27.9% buoyed by growth in the Offshore fleet and currency gains. During the first half, the Group posted €1 million in capital gains compared with €6.3 million in the first half of 2008.

Operating income amounted to €115.9 million, up 28.2% compared with the first half of 2008.

Net income Group share was €82.3 million against €78.2 million in the first half of 2008.

Return on capital employed, measured by the ratio of EBITDA to average capital employed excluding payments on account, is 18.1%, in line with the 18% objective announced for 2012 in the strategic plan.

Offshore Division

With a revenue growth of 43.1% to €407.7 million (up 29.7% at constant exchange rates), the Offshore Division is performing even better than the Horizon 2012 plan’s objective of 21% average annual growth.

Revenues posted by the fleet of owned vessels surged by 49.8% to €363.8 million, largely driven by our policy of medium and long term contracts, and from the full effect on the first half of vessels commissioned in 2008 and delivery of 13 supply vessels (10 of which are vessels in the Bourbon Liberty series).

EBITDA came in at €158.7 million, up 58.3%; the ratio of EBITDA to revenues grows consistently from year to year, bolstered by the combination of a favourable dollar rate and a positive product mix (increased proportion of revenue earned with own vessels).

Operating income which includes a €4 million provision write-back, amounted to €104.4 million, which is almost double the figure for the first half of 2008.

Marine Services

Revenues posted by the fully owned Marine Services fleet soared by 53% year on year, largely due to the new vessels brought into service over the past 12 months (23 supply and 42 crewboats). This growth confirms the success of the new generation vessels, the Bourbon Liberty series, which customers particularly appreciate for the logistics cost savings they provide in a depressed market environment.

Although still at a relatively high utilization rate (an average of 91% for supply vessels), the average usage rate is down slightly as a result of the current preference in the oil industry for short term contracts, and due to the fact that transit costs are not charged for new vessels sailing from the shipyards to operating zones.

EBITDA excluding capital gains amounted to €132 million, up 71% compared with the previous year.

Subsea Services

Subsea Services owned fleet revenues increased by 35.8%, boosted by the full effect of 2 IMR vessels brought into service in 2008 and a favourable dollar exchange rate. Although year on year chartered business volumes has decreased, the share of chartered vessels still remains higher than in Marine Services.

EBITDA stands at €25.5 million, up 50.9% compared with the previous year.


Offshore Division

Despite uncertainties as to the impact of the economic upturn on the demand for oil and the accelerating fall in oil field production following capital expenditure cuts, the oil and gas services activity is expected to grow over the medium term. BOURBON is well positioned today to face up to the effects of excess capacity and to take full advantage of the future effects of the business upturn.

Its modern and high productivity fleet helps minimize customer costs and the Bourbon Liberty series brings to the continental offshore market substitution vessels with the same specifications as those operating in deep offshore.

Consequently, the progress made in implementing the Horizon 2012 Plan in 2008 and continuing into the first half of 2009 will ensure achievement of the plan's objectives.