Lindblad Expeditions Holdings today reported financial results for the quarter ended June 30, 2021.
Dolf Berle, Chief Executive Officer, said: “It is a great privilege to succeed our founder Sven Lindblad in the CEO role of this remarkable company. Over the past 40 years Sven has built the preeminent expedition travel business, providing high-quality and immersive experiences in the world’s most extraordinary destinations.
“I am excited, together with Sven and the entire Lindblad Board of Directors, to build upon this past success and further capitalize on the substantial demand for authentic adventure travel. Much of our short-term focus is on ramping up operations, and we couldn’t be happier to have nearly all our ships back delivering unparalleled experiences to our loyal guests,” he continued.
“At the same time, the comprehensive plan the Company has been executing during the pandemic has enabled us to return to operations as a vibrant company. While it will take some time to fully regain the momentum we were generating before the pandemic, we are well on our way and, with additional capacity from two new polar ships, an expanded product platform that includes our two recently acquired land-based business, and a strong balance sheet that will enable us to explore additional opportunities, we are well positioned for sustained growth and building additional shareholder value in the years ahead.”
Second quarter tour revenues of $15.3 million increased $15.5 million as compared to the same period in 2020. The increase was driven by a $6.7 million increase at the Lindblad segment and a $8.8 million increase at the Land Experiences segment primarily due to the resumption of several expeditions and trips during the second quarter of 2021. The Land Experiences segment also included the operations of Off the Beaten Path and DuVine Cycling + Adventure Co., which were acquired during the first quarter of 2021.
Net loss available to stockholders for the second quarter was $36.6 million, $0.71 per diluted share, as compared with net loss available to stockholders of $39.7 million, $0.80 per diluted share, in the first quarter of 2020. The $3.0 million improvement primarily reflects the resumption of several expeditions and trips and a $0.2 million foreign currency gain in the current year versus a $3.9 million foreign currency loss in the second quarter of 2020. These increases were partially offset by a $1.5 million increase in interest expense due to additional borrowings and higher rates.
Second quarter Adjusted EBITDA loss of $23.0 million improved $2.5 million as compared to the same period in 2020. The increase was driven by a $1.2 million improvement at the Lindblad segment and a $1.4 million improvement at the Land Experiences segment.
Lindblad segment Adjusted EBITDA loss of $21.8 million improved $1.2 million versus the second quarter a year ago, primarily due to the resumption of several expeditions during June 2021, partially offset by higher cost of tours and increased personnel costs related to restarting operations and higher credit card commissions related to bookings for future travel.
The Experiences segment saw an Adjusted EBITDA loss of $1.1 million improved $1.4 million versus the second quarter a year ago, primarily due to additional trips, partially offset by higher cost of tours and increased personnel costs related to the additional departures and increased marketing costs to drive long-term growth initiatives. The Land Experiences segment also included the operations of Off the Beaten Path and DuVine, which were acquired during the first quarter of 2021.
Lindblad resumed ship operations in June 2021 and as of July 31, 2021 had eight of its nine vessels providing expeditions to guests.
During June 2021, the company launched three ships in Alaska and another in the Galapagos and, following the quarter, the company resumed operations on the majority of its remaining vessels, with additional ships launching in Alaska, the Galapagos and Iceland.
According to a press release, Lindblad said it continues to work with local authorities on plans to operate in additional geographies during the second half of the year. As the COVID-19 virus effects travel restrictions in various locations around the world, the company also continues to work with its guests to reschedule travel plans and refund payments, as applicable, for those expeditions and trips that the Company is not able to operate.
Lindblad also said there are a variety of strategic advantages that enable it to deploy its ships safely and quickly, while mitigating the risk of COVID-19 as travel restrictions are lifted. The most notable is the size of its owned and operated vessels which range from 48 to 148 passengers, allowing for a highly controlled environment that includes stringent cleaning protocols.
Bookings for the full year 2022 are 36% ahead of the bookings for 2021 as of the same date a year ago and 36% ahead of the bookings for 2020 as of the same date two years ago, according to a press release.
The company continues to see new bookings for future travel, including over $174.0 million since the beginning of 2021, and is receiving significant deposits and final payments for future travel.
For 2021 voyages that have been cancelled or rescheduled, the company is offering future travel credits or full refunds to its fully paid guests. As of August 3, 2021, the majority of guests have opted for future travel credits.
As of June 30, 2021, the company had $160.1 million in unrestricted cash and $43.5 million in restricted cash primarily related to deposits on future travel originating from U.S. ports and credit card reserves. As of June 30, 2021, the company had a total debt position of $514.7 million and was in compliance with all of its debt covenants.
According to the press release: “As we continue to ramp up operations, our monthly cash usage will increase as we incur costs in operating expeditions, preparing additional ships for return to service, spending to market and advertise upcoming expeditions and trips and reinstating remaining furloughed and part-time office staff as needed. We also anticipate a significant increase in guest payments as we receive final payments for upcoming expeditions and trips, as well as deposits for new reservations for future travel. Given the dynamic nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, the company cannot reasonably estimate the potential impacts the pandemic will have on its financial condition, results of operations, cash flows, plans and growth for the foreseeable future. It is unknown when travel restrictions and various border closures will be lifted and what the demand for expedition travel will be once restrictions are no longer in place.”