Published on : Monday, February 3, 2014
At the end of the last month Plum Creek management officially announced fourth quarter earnings of $40 million, or $0.24 per share, on revenues of $331 million. Earnings for the fourth quarter of 2012 were $79 million, or $0.49 per share, on revenues of $354 million.
Results for the fourth quarter include $12 million of expenses directly related to the completion of the company’s December acquisition of timberland, real estate, and subsurface resources from MeadWestvaco Corporation (NYSE: MWV). Excluding these expenses, adjusted fourth quarter earnings were $52 million, or $0.31 per share.
Earnings for the full year of 2013 were $214 million, or $1.30 per share, on revenues of $1.34 billion. Excluding the expenses associated with the acquisition mentioned above and the $4 million fire loss recorded in the third quarter, adjusted earnings for 2013 were $230 million, or $1.39 per share. Earnings for the full year of 2012 were $203 million, or $1.25 per diluted share, on revenues of $1.34 billion.
Adjusted EBITDA, a non-GAAP measure of operating performance, for 2013 was $502 million and was $530 million for 2012. As planned, lower real estate activity accounted for the decline in adjusted EBITDA. A reconciliation of adjusted EBITDA to net income and cash flow from operations is provided as an attachment to this release.
“Over the course of the past year, results have improved significantly in our timber resources, manufacturing and non-timber resource businesses,” said Rick Holley, chief executive officer. “Importantly, we achieved our goal of growing the adjusted EBITDA from these three business segments by approximately $50 million. We completed a very good fourth quarter, with earnings coming in at the high-end of our initial expectations after taking into consideration the expenses related to closing the acquisition. Momentum is building and we are well positioned to grow the company’s overall cash flow in 2014.
“During 2013, Western log prices recovered to pre-recession levels and Southern log prices ended the year approximately 12 percent higher than they were at the end of 2012. We believe the improvements in the South represent the early stages of recovery in the region.
“Our December acquisition of assets from MeadWestvaco added 501,000 acres of productive, well-stocked timberlands to our Southeast portfolio and grows our presence in these attractive, long-term markets. We integrated these assets into our operations in December and expect them to be accretive to the company’s cash flow on a per share basis in 2014. We expect their contribution to expand in 2015 and beyond.”
The company reported $295 million in operating income for 2013, $14 million higher than 2012’s $281 million operating income. Improving results from the company’s timber business segments grew operating income by $30 million while operating income from the manufacturing business grew $14 million. This growth was partially offset by a planned reduction in land sale activities and higher corporate expenses during 2013.