November 7, 2016 - 2:06 PM EST
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Sprague Resources LP Reports Third Quarter 2016 Results

PORTSMOUTH, N.H., Nov. 07, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) --  Sprague Resources LP (“Sprague”) (NYSE:SRLP) today reported its financial results for the third quarter ended September 30, 2016.

  • Net sales were $422.8 million for the third quarter of 2016, compared to net sales of $558.0 million for the third quarter of 2015.
  • Net loss was $8.8 million for the third quarter of 2016, compared to net income of $8.6 million for the third quarter of 2015.
  • Adjusted gross margin was $54.8 million for the third quarter of 2016, compared to adjusted gross margin of $50.3 million for the third quarter of 2015.
  • Adjusted EBITDA was $19.3 million for the third quarter of 2016, compared to adjusted EBITDA of $12.6 million for the third quarter of 2015.

“Sprague’s strong third quarter results once again highlight the strength of our business model,” said David Glendon, President and Chief Executive Officer.  “Adjusted gross margin increased $4.4 million, adjusted EBITDA grew by $6.7 million, and Sprague generated $3.7 million more distributable cash flow than the third quarter of 2015.  The strategic acquisition of Santa Buckley Energy's natural gas and electricity assets, continued discipline managing operating expenses and SG&A costs, and solid utilization of our storage asset capabilities have all contributed to our success this year.  Sprague has delivered 12% distribution growth to unitholders over the last four quarters, while maintaining 1.8 times distribution coverage.”

Refined Products

  • Refined Products segment volumes decreased 17% to 237.5 million gallons in the third quarter of 2016, compared to 287.6 million gallons in the third quarter of 2015.
  • Adjusted gross margin in the Refined Products segment increased $6.8 million, or 21%, to $38.7 million in the third quarter of 2016, compared to $31.9 million in the third quarter of 2015.

“Refined Products adjusted gross margin increased 21% year over year as an improved market structure for carrying inventory and associated basis gains more than offset lower distillate and gasoline sales volumes,” said Mr. Glendon.

Natural Gas

  • Natural Gas segment volumes increased 12% to 11.8 Bcf in the third quarter of 2016, compared to 10.5 Bcf in the third quarter of 2015.
  • Natural Gas adjusted gross margin was $2.8 million for the third quarter of 2016, a decrease of $1.7 million compared to the third quarter of 2015.

“Higher natural gas volumes and associated margin from the Santa acquisition were offset by increased supply costs to serve our customers and reduced optimization opportunities compared to a year ago due to extended Algonquin pipeline maintenance during the quarter,” reported Mr. Glendon.

Materials Handling

  • Materials Handling adjusted gross margin decreased by $0.7 million or 6%, to $11.3 million for the third quarter 2016, compared to $12.0 million for the third quarter 2015.

“Sprague’s Materials Handling results were driven by windmill component handling timing differences and lower pulp export demand by our customers.  Asphalt and furnace slag handling activities partially offset the break bulk declines,” said Mr. Glendon.

Quarterly Distribution Increase

On October 28, 2016, the Board of Directors of Sprague’s general partner, Sprague Resources GP LLC, announced its tenth consecutive distribution increase and approved a cash distribution of $0.5625 per unit for the quarter ended September 30, 2016, representing a 3% increase over the distribution declared for the quarter ended June 30, 2016 and an increase of 12% over the quarterly distribution of $0.5025 per unit paid in November 2015. The distribution will be paid November 14, 2016 to unitholders of record as of the close of business on November 8, 2016.  Sprague's 2016 distribution coverage through September 30th was 1.6 times.

Financial Results Conference Call

Management will review Sprague’s third quarter 2016 financial results in a teleconference call for analysts and investors today, November 7, 2016. 

Date and Time:  November 7, 2016 at 1:00 PM ET
Dial-in numbers:  (866) 516-2130 (U.S. and Canada)
   (678) 509-7612 (International)
Participation Code:  97948815

The conference call may also be accessed live by a webcast available on the "Investor Relations" page of Sprague's website at and will be archived on the website for one year from the date of webcast.  Additionally, this quarterly earnings release and our Non-GAAP Measures Quarterly Supplement are available in the Investor Relations section of Sprague's website referenced above.

About Sprague Resources LP

Sprague Resources LP is a master limited partnership engaged in the purchase, storage, distribution and sale of refined petroleum products and natural gas. Sprague also provides storage and handling services for a broad range of materials.

Non-GAAP Financial Measures

To supplement the financial information presented in accordance with United States generally accepted accounting principles (“GAAP”), Sprague’s management uses certain non-GAAP financial measurements to evaluate its results of operations which include EBITDA, adjusted EBITDA, adjusted gross margin and  distributable cash flow. Sprague believes that investors benefit from having access to the same financial measures that are used by its management and that these measures are useful to investors because they aid in comparing its operating performance with that of other companies with similar operations.

Below please find a description of how Sprague defines EBITDA, adjusted gross margin, adjusted EBIDTA and distributable cash flow.  Please see the table titled "Reconciliation of Non-GAAP Measures" for a reconciliation of these non-GAAP measures to the most directly comparable GAAP measures.

As EBITDA, adjusted EBITDA, adjusted gross margin and distributable cash flow are measures not prepared in accordance with GAAP they should not be considered as alternatives to net income (loss), or operating income or any other measure of financial performance presented in accordance with GAAP.  Additionally, Sprague's calculations of non-GAAP measures may not be comparable to similarly titled measures of other businesses because they may be defined differently by other companies.


Sprague defines EBITDA as net income (loss) before interest, income taxes, depreciation and amortization. EBITDA is used as a supplemental financial measure by external users of Sprague’s financial statements, such as investors, trade suppliers, research analysts and commercial banks to assess:

  • The financial performance of Sprague’s assets, operations and return on capital without regard to financing methods, capital structure or historical cost basis;
  • The ability of our assets to generate sufficient revenue, that when rendered to cash, will be available to pay interest on our indebtedness and make distributions to our equity holders;
  • Repeatable operating performance that is not distorted by non-recurring items or market volatility; and
  • The viability of acquisitions and capital expenditure projects.

 Adjusted Gross Margin and Adjusted EBITDA

The Partnership trades, purchases, stores and sells energy commodities that experience market value fluctuations.  To manage the Partnership’s underlying performance, including its physical and derivative positions, management utilizes adjusted gross margin and adjusted EBITDA, which are non-GAAP financial measures.  Adjusted gross margin and adjusted EBITDA are also used by external users of the Partnership’s consolidated financial statements to assess the Partnership’s economic results of operations and its commodity market value reporting to lenders. In determining adjusted gross margin and adjusted EBITDA, the Partnership adjusts its segment results for the impact of unrealized hedging gains and losses with regard to refined products and natural gas inventory, prepaid forward contracts and natural gas transportation contracts. These adjustments align the unrealized hedging gains and losses to the period in which the revenue from the sale of inventory, prepaid fixed forwards and the utilization of transportation contracts relating to those hedges is realized in net income (loss).  Adjusted gross margin has no impact on reported volumes or net sales. 

Adjusted gross margin and adjusted EBITDA are used as supplemental financial measures by management to describe its operations and economic performance to investors, trade suppliers, research analysts and commercial banks to assess:

  • The economic results of its operations;
  • The market value of its inventory and natural gas transportation contracts for financial reporting to lenders, as well as for borrowing base purposes; and
  • Repeatable operating performance that is not distorted by non-recurring items or market volatility.

Distributable Cash Flow

Sprague defines distributable cash flow as adjusted EBITDA less cash interest expense, cash taxes, and maintenance capital expenditures. Distributable cash flow calculations also reflect the elimination of compensation expense expected to be settled with the issuance of Partnership units, expenses related to business combinations and other adjustments. Distributable cash flow is a significant performance measure used by Sprague and by external users of its financial statements, such as investors, commercial banks and research analysts, to compare the cash generating performance of the Partnership in relation to the cash distributions expected to be paid to its unitholders. Distributable cash flow is also an important financial measure for Sprague’s unitholders since it serves as an indicator of its success in providing a return on investment. Additionally, distributable cash flow is utilized as a performance measure in certain of its compensation plans. Distributable cash flow indicates to investors whether or not Sprague can generate performance that can sustain or support an increase in quarterly distribution rates. Distributable cash flow is also a quantitative standard used throughout the investment community with respect to publicly-traded partnerships because the value of a unit of such an entity is generally determined by the unit's yield, which in turn is based on the distributions to a unitholder.

Forward Looking Statements

This press release may include forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties and other factors that are difficult to predict and many of which are beyond management’s control. Although Sprague believes that the assumptions underlying these statements are reasonable, investors are cautioned that such forward-looking statements are inherently uncertain and involve risks that may affect our business prospects and performance causing actual results to differ from those discussed in the foregoing release.  Such risks and uncertainties include, by way of example and not of limitation: increased competition for our products or services; changes in supply or demand for our products; changes in operating conditions and costs; changes in the level of environmental remediation spending; potential equipment malfunction; potential labor issues; the legislative or regulatory environment; terminal construction/repair delays; nonperformance by major customers or suppliers; and political and economic conditions, including the impact of potential terrorist acts and international hostilities. These and other applicable risks and uncertainties have been described more fully in Sprague’s most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) on March 10, 2016, and in our subsequent Form 10-Q filings, as well as Form 8-K and other documents filed with the SEC.

Sprague does not provide guidance on expected net income (loss) (the GAAP financial measure most directly comparable to adjusted EBITDA) due to the inherent difficulty and impracticality of forecasting certain amounts required by GAAP such as unrealized gains and losses on derivative hedges.

Sprague undertakes no obligation and does not intend to update any forward-looking statements to reflect new information or future events.  You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements which speak only as of the date of this press release.

This release is intended to be a qualified notice under Treasury Regulation Section 1.1446-4(b). Brokers and nominees should treat one hundred percent (100.0%) of Sprague’s distributions to non-U.S. investors as being attributable to income that is effectively connected with a United States trade or business. Accordingly, Sprague’s distributions to non-U.S. investors are subject to federal income tax withholding at the highest applicable effective tax rate.

(Financial Tables Below)

Sprague Resources LP
Summary Unaudited Financial Data
Three and Nine Months Ended September 30, 2016 and 2015
    Three Months Ended September 30, Nine Months Ended September 30,
    2016 2015 2016 2015
    ($ in thousands)
Statement of Operations Data:            
Net sales   $422,779  $558,022  $1,623,173  $2,818,123 
Operating costs and expenses:          
Cost of products sold (exclusive of depreciation and amortization)   383,211  498,537  1,463,938  2,604,969 
Operating expenses   15,725  17,870  49,078  54,394 
Selling, general and administrative   19,735  19,894  62,099  71,193 
Depreciation and amortization   5,329  5,188  16,001  15,365 
Total operating costs and expenses   424,000  541,489  1,591,116  2,745,921 
Operating (loss) income   (1,221) 16,533  32,057  72,202 
Other (expense) income   (19)   (114) 514 
Interest income   40  138  379  367 
Interest expense   (6,685) (6,399) (20,179) (20,624)
(Loss) income before income taxes   (7,885) 10,272  12,143  52,459 
Income tax provision   (909) (1,692) (861) (2,490)
Net (loss) income   (8,794) 8,580  11,282  49,969 
Incentive distributions declared   (488) (105) (1,144) (154)
Limited partners’ interest in net (loss) income   $(9,282) $8,475  $10,138  $49,815 
Net (loss) income per limited partner unit:          
Common - basic   $(0.44) $0.40  $0.48  $2.37 
Common - diluted   $(0.44) $0.39  $0.46  $2.32 
Subordinated - basic and diluted   $(0.44) $0.40  $0.48  $2.37 
Units used to compute net (loss) income per limited partner unit:            
Common - basic   11,229,805  10,999,848  11,189,987  10,965,400 
Common - diluted   11,229,805  11,253,395  11,506,830  11,199,128 
Subordinated - basic and diluted   10,071,970  10,071,970  10,071,970  10,071,970 


Sprague Resources LP
Volume, Net Sales and Adjusted Gross Margin by Segment
Three and Nine Months Ended September 30, 2016 and 2015
  Three Months Ended September 30, Nine Months Ended September 30,
  2016 2015 2016 2015
  (unaudited) (unaudited) (unaudited) (unaudited)
  ($ and volumes in thousands)
Refined products (gallons) 237,510  287,574  978,264  1,303,092 
Natural gas (MMBtus) 11,810  10,516  44,799  42,747 
Materials handling (short tons) 764  790  2,016  1,859 
Materials handling (gallons) 78,330  62,244  234,738  186,984 
Net Sales:        
Refined products $350,528  $488,639  $1,331,197  $2,499,335 
Natural gas 55,868  52,568  240,256  265,805 
Materials handling 11,304  12,027  35,848  33,905 
Other operations 5,079  4,788  15,872  19,078 
Total net sales $422,779  $558,022  $1,623,173  $2,818,123 
Reconciliation of Operating (Loss) Income to Adjusted Gross Margin:          
Operating (loss) income $(1,221) $16,533  $32,057  $72,202 
Operating costs and expenses not allocated to operating segments:          
Operating expenses 15,725  17,870  49,078  54,394 
Selling, general and administrative 19,735  19,894  62,099  71,193 
Depreciation and amortization 5,329  5,188  16,001  15,365 
Add: unrealized loss (gain) on inventory 14,636  (575) 26,592  5,102 
Add: unrealized (gain) loss on prepaid forward contracts (120) 2,248  (1,161) 2,248 
Add: unrealized loss (gain) on natural gas transportation contracts 672  (10,832) 5,221  (15,300)
Total adjusted gross margin: $54,756  $50,326  $189,887  $205,204 
Adjusted Gross Margin by Segment:        
Refined products $38,693  $31,852  $104,070  $124,101 
Natural gas 2,773  4,423  43,734  40,556 
Materials handling 11,305  12,027  35,826  33,899 
Other operations 1,985  2,024  6,257  6,648 
Total adjusted gross margin $54,756  $50,326  $189,887  $205,204 


Sprague Resources LP
Reconciliation of Non-GAAP Measures
Three and Nine Months Ended September 30, 2016 and 2015
 Three Months Ended September 30, Nine Months Ended September 30,
 2016 2015 2016 2015
 (unaudited) (unaudited) (unaudited) (unaudited)
 ($ in thousands)
Reconciliation of net (loss) income to EBITDA, Adjusted   EBITDA and Distributable Cash Flow:         
Net (loss) income$(8,794) $8,580  $11,282  $49,969 
Interest expense, net6,645  6,261  19,800  20,257 
Tax provision909  1,692  861  2,490 
Depreciation and amortization5,329  5,188  16,001  15,365 
EBITDA$4,089  $21,721  $47,944  $88,081 
Add: unrealized loss (gain) on inventory14,636  (575) 26,592  5,102 
Add: unrealized (gain) loss on prepaid forward contracts(120) 2,248  (1,161) 2,248 
Add: unrealized loss (gain) on natural gas transportation contracts672  (10,832) 5,221  (15,300)
Adjusted EBITDA$19,277  $12,562  $78,596  $80,131 
Cash interest expense, net(5,629) (5,380) (16,840) (17,588)
Cash taxes(385) (531) (930) (1,717)
Maintenance capital expenditures(3,329) (2,172) (7,065) (7,166)
Elimination of expense relating to incentive compensation and directors fees expected to be paid in common units641  1,099  1,664  5,231 
Other386  1,672  998  2,835 
Distributable cash flow$10,961  $7,250  $56,423  $61,726 

Investor Contact:
Taylor Hudson
+1 603.430.5397
[email protected]

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Source: GlobeNewswire (November 7, 2016 - 2:06 PM EST)

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