Lindblad plans an order for two new ships

By ,   August 13, 2015 ,   Cruise Industry

Lindblad Expeditions Inc currently planning to place orders for two coastal vessels with delivery in 2017 and 2018.

According to Sven-Olof Lindblad, President and CEO of the line, the new 100-passenger, U.S.-flagged vessels would allow the company to capitalize on strong demand for expeditions with routes similar to the existing ones where demand was in excess of Lindblad's capacity. He added they were also reviewing various acquisition opportunities that would be accretive to the planned expansion of the company. Given their strong capital position, Lindblad were "well positioned to act as a platform to facilitate consolidation”.

The second-quarter results for Lindblad became public last month, upon completing the merger with Capitol Acquisition. Capitol changed name to Lindblad Expeditions Holdings Inc. Now it trades on NASDAQ Stock Market under the symbols LIND and LINDW.

Lindblad's adjusted EBITDA (Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization) for the second quarter of 2015 was $12 million, which is more than 9% increase from the prior-year quarter with $11 million. Adjusted EBITDA for the first half of 2015 was $26.3 million, nearly 5% increase over the same period in 2014.

According to Sven-Olof Lindblad, during 2016 summer the Orion ship would be redeployed to Europe, which was part of line's integration of Orion acquisition into the fleet. In March 2013, Lindblad acquired Orion Expedition Cruises and the ship was integrated into its fleet the next year.

Lindblad’s CFO & COO, Ian Rogers, said that bookings for 2016 were slightly ahead of where they had been at that time last year. Although it was early to provide a detailed image for next year, bookings remained strong with 43% of ticket revenue for 2016 financial year "on the books".

Lindblad also announced the appointment of Bernard W. Aronson as line's independent director. From 1993 until 2015 Aronson served as a director of RCC (Royal Caribbean Cruises) Ltd.