Ambassadors International, Inc. (the “Company”) (Nasdaq: AMIE) announced today its financial results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2010.
Total revenue from continuing operations for the three months ended March 31, 2010 was $12.6 million, compared to $16.1 million for the three months ended March 31, 2009. The results were better than the Company’s forecast and budget for first quarter 2010, even though first quarter revenue was lower than in 2009. In first quarter 2010, Windstar Cruises experienced a capacity decrease of 3.9%. Windstar operated 14 days less than in first quarter 2009 due to the scheduled Wind Spirit dry dock and experienced a decrease in charter and incentive revenue due to global economic conditions over the last 12 months.
Cruise operating expenses were $11.7 million for the three months ended March 31, 2010 compared to $13.2 million for the three months ended March 31, 2009. The decrease in cruise operating expenses is primarily due to the reduction in materials and services and efficiencies gained following the transition of the ship management from a third party management company to in-house personnel in September of 2009.
Net loss for the three months ended March 31, 2010 was $5.8 million compared to $11.4 million for the three months ended March 31, 2009.
“Windstar experienced a strong wave season this year, with wave season booking volume from January through March 2010 significantly ahead of last year,” said Art Rodney, Interim Chief Executive Officer, Ambassadors International, Inc. “It will still be a challenging year. We are still feeling the effect of the decrease in charter and incentive business in 2010. However, we are experiencing positive improvement in per diems and load factors for the second half of the year.”
“For 2011, Windstar’s bookings for charter and incentive sailings have increased significantly in recent months when compared to the same timeframe a year ago,” said Rodney. “Also, we are very pleased with early bookings we have received for our new itineraries featuring the Baltic and the Holy Land.”
Ambassadors continues to execute on the plan announced in February 2009 to focus all capital and efforts on Windstar Cruises and the small ship luxury segment. Ambassadors has been successful in restructuring a significant amount of the Company’s Convertible Notes in the fall 2009 Exchange Offer and obtaining a $15 million working capital credit facility to provide funding for operations over the next two years. In addition to reducing outstanding indebtedness and obtaining a credit facility, the Company has also been successful in restructuring the core business activities to allow the Company to dedicate liquidity resources to the operations and growth of Windstar Cruises.
Windstar Cruises continues to provide its loyal guests with the award-winning, yet casually elegant experience the line is known for. Windstar remains a strong, award-winning product and is currently implementing its next phase of its Degrees of Difference initiative featuring added amenities and enhancements to the fleet which will be completed in the summer of 2010.