Operating income for the first quarter grew 23.8% to $46.4 million, with Adjusted EBITDA posting a 10.3% increase to $93.5 million, from strong revenue performance and the benefits of ongoing business improvement initiatives. Net Revenue grew 4.6% in the quarter from an increase in Net Yield and a 2.3% increase in Capacity Days. Net Yield increased 2.2%, or 2.3% on a Constant Currency basis, as a result of higher average ticket pricing across the fleet coupled with increased onboard and other revenue per Capacity Day, particularly in tour and gaming operations.
Net Cruise Cost per Capacity Day increased slightly by 0.6%, or 0.7% on a Constant Currency basis, as the timing of repairs and maintenance expenses coupled with benefits from business initiatives and improved efficiencies offset a 15% increase in the per metric ton cost of fuel to $598 from $520 in the prior year. Excluding fuel expense, Net Cruise Cost per Capacity day decreased 1.9%, or 1.8% on a Constant Currency basis. "It is always rewarding to report strong top-to-bottom results," said Kevin Sheehan, President and CEO of Norwegian Cruise Line. "Revenue growth was very positive, considering the impact of redeploying Norwegian Jade in late 2011 due to geopolitical disruptions in Egypt and the surrounding region," continued Sheehan.
Interest expense, net decreased 3.6% mainly due to lower average debt balances in the period. During the quarter the Company took advantage of favorable market conditions and issued $100 million in senior unsecured notes which were an add-on to the existing notes due in 2018. The net proceeds were used to repay portions of certain outstanding revolving credit facilities and for general corporate purposes.
The Company posted net income of $3.3 million on revenue of $515.4 million versus a loss of $(7.9) million on revenue of $495.5 million in 2011.