Carnival Corporation & plc (NYSE/LSE: CCL; NYSE: CUK) announced U.S. GAAP net income of $352 million, or $0.48 diluted EPS, for the first quarter of 2017 compared to U.S. GAAP net income for the first quarter of 2016 of $142 million, or $0.18diluted EPS. First quarter 2017 adjusted net income of $279 million, or $0.38 adjusted EPS, compared to adjusted net income of $301 million, or $0.39 adjusted EPS, for the first quarter of 2016. Adjusted net income excludes unrealized gains and losses on fuel derivatives and other net charges, totaling $73 million in gains for the first quarter 2017 and $159 million of losses for the first quarter 2016. Revenues for the first quarter of 2017 of $3.8 billion were higher than the $3.7 billion in the prior year.
Carnival Corporation & plc President and Chief Executive Officer Arnold Donald noted, “We are off to a good start delivering another quarter of operational improvement on top of a very strong first quarter last year. Our performance was driven by increased demand, particularly for our core Caribbean itineraries, leading to higher year-over-year ticket prices which enabled us to overcome the significant negative impact of both fuel and currency to exceed the high end of our guidance range.”
Key information for the first quarter 2017 compared to the prior year:
- Gross revenue yields (revenue per available lower berth day or “ALBD”) increased 0.1 percent. In constant currency, net revenue yields increased 3.8 percent for 1Q 2017, better than December guidance of up 1.5 to 2.5 percent.
- Gross cruise costs including fuel per ALBD increased 2.9 percent. In constant currency, net cruise costs excluding fuel per ALBD increased 3.2 percent, compared to December guidance of up 1.5 to 2.5 percent, due to the timing of certain expenses.
- Changes in fuel prices (including realized fuel derivatives) and currency exchange rates decreased earnings by $0.13 per share.
Highlights during the first quarter included the January announcement at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Nevada of a potential breakthrough guest experience innovation the Ocean Platform — featuring Ocean Medallion. The experience will debut on Princess Cruises’Regal Princess in November 2017 followed by additional Princess ships in 2018.
Fleet enhancement milestones included the official debut of Seabourn Cruises’ newest ship, Seabourn Encore, with its naming ceremony in Singapore. International recording artist and world’s best-selling soprano Sarah Brightman presided over the naming ceremony as godmother of the stunning new 600-guest ship. Additionally, the company signed a memorandum of agreement with Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri to build two new cruise ships. The first is designated for Holland America Line to be delivered in 2021 with the second for Princess Cruises in 2022.
Also during the quarter, following the Corporation’s historic sailings from the U.S. to Cubathrough its Fathom brand, Carnival Cruise Line received approval to begin operating cruises to Cuba. Carnival Paradise will be the largest cruise ship to sail to Cuba from the U.S. when it begins calling in Havana in June 2017.