SFL - First Quarter 2012 Results


HAMILTON, BERMUDA--(Marketwire -05/24/12)-

Ship Finance International Limited (SFL) - Earnings Release

Reports preliminary 1Q 2012 results and increased quarterly dividend of$0.39 per share

Hamilton, Bermuda, May 24, 2012. Ship Finance International Limited("ShipFinance" or the "Company") today announced its preliminary financialresults forthe quarter ended March 31, 2012.


* The Board of Directors has declared a quarterly dividend of $0.39 per
* $13.6 million, or $0.17 per share, accumulated in cash sweep from
* $1.4 million, or $0.02 per share, accumulated in profit share in excess
of the original base rates.
* During the first quarter 2012, the Company took delivery of four
Drybulk newbuildings.
* In April 2012, the Company terminated five bareboat charters with
Horizon Lines and received $40 million in second-lien bonds plus
equity warrants as compensation.
* Selected key financial data for the quarter compared to the previous

| | Three Months Ended |
| | |
| | Mar 31, 2012 Dec 31, 2011 |
| Charter revenues((1)) | $186m $193m |
| | |
| EBITDA((2)) | $154m $162m |
| | |
| Net income | $39m $30m |
| | |
| Earnings per share | $0.49 $0.38 |
| | |
| Dividend per share | $0.39 $0.30 |

Dividends and Results for the Quarter Ended March 31, 2012

The Board of Directors has declared an increased quarterly cash dividend of$0.39 per share. Ship Finance has now paid dividends for 33 consecutivequarters. The dividend will be paid on or about June 28, 2012 toshareholders ofrecord as of June 15, 2012. The ex-dividend date will be June 13, 2012.

The Company reported total U.S. GAAP operating revenues on a consolidatedbasisof $84.1 million, or $1.06 per share, in the first quarter of 2012. Thisnumberexcludes $15.8 million of revenues classified as 'repayment ofinvestments infinance lease', and also excludes $87.7 million of charter revenuesearned byassets classified as 'investment in associate'.

The new cash sweep agreement with Frontline had a positive effect of$13.6million, or $0.17 per share in the quarter. The cash sweep for the fullyear2012 is payable in March 2013.

There was a $1.4 million, or $0.02 per share, accrual to the 25% profitsharefor revenues in excess of the original base rates in the quarter.FollowingFrontline's $50 million prepayment of profit share in 2011, another$48.6million of profit share will need to accumulate before profit sharerevenues arerecognized in the consolidated accounts.

Reported net operating income pursuant to U.S. GAAP for the quarter was$48.2million, or $0.61 per share, and reported net income was $39.0 million, or$0.49per share.

Ole B. Hjertaker, Chief Executive Officer of Ship Finance Management ASsaid ina comment: "We continue to deliver positive results and have paid quarterlycashdividends since our operations began in 2004. The tanker marketoutperformedmost analysts' expectations in the first quarter and this hascontributed toadditional revenues through our new cash sweep arrangement withFrontline. TheVLCC tanker market has continued at a healthy level so far into thesecondquarter, and based on this we expect a significant cash sweepcontribution inthe second quarter as well."

Mr Hjertaker continued: "Following the restructuring of Horizon Line wehaveseven container vessels in the spot market. Given the changed profileof ourcontainer business we evaluate structural alternatives to maximize thevalue ofthis business. One of the alternatives we consider is to carve out thecontainerbusiness into a separate entity."

The full report can be found in the link below.

May 24, 2012

The Board of Directors
Ship Finance International Limited
Hamilton, Bermuda


1. Charter revenues includes total charter hire from all vessels and rigs,including assets in 100% owned subsidiaries classified as 'Investment inassociates'.

2. EBITDA is a non-GAAP measure and includes assets in 100% ownedsubsidiariesclassified as 'Investment in associates'. For more details please seeAppendix1: Reconciliation of Net Income to EBITDA.

Forward Looking Statements

This press release contains forward looking statements. These statementsarebased upon various assumptions, many of which are based, in turn, uponfurtherassumptions, including Ship Finance management's examination of historicaloperating trends, data contained in the Company's records and other dataavailable from third parties. Although Ship Finance believes that theseassumptions were reasonable when made, because assumptions are inherentlysubject to significant uncertainties and contingencies which are difficultorimpossible to predict and are beyond its control, Ship Finance cannot giveassurance that it will achieve or accomplish these expectations, beliefs orintentions.

Important factors that, in our view, could cause actual results to differmaterially from those discussed in the forward-looking statements includethestrength of world economies, fluctuations in currencies and interest rates,general market conditions including fluctuations in charter hire rates andvessel values, changes in demand in the markets in which we operate,changes indemand resulting from changes in OPEC's petroleum production levels andworldwide oil consumption and storage, developments regarding thetechnologiesrelating to oil exploration, changes in market demand in countries whichimportcommodities and finished goods and changes in the amount and location oftheproduction of those commodities and finished goods, increased inspectionprocedures and more restrictive import and export controls, changes in ouroperating expenses, including bunker prices, drydocking and insurancecosts,performance of our charterers and other counterparties with whom we deal,timelydelivery of vessels under construction within the contracted price, changesingovernmental rules and regulations or actions taken by regulatoryauthorities,potential liability from pending or future litigation, general domestic andinternational political conditions, potential disruption of shipping routesdueto accidents or political events, and other important factors describedfromtime to time in the reports filed by the Company with the Securities andExchange Commission.

First Quarter 2012 Results:http://hugin.info/134876/R/1614669/514520.pdf

This announcement is distributed by Thomson Reuters on behalf ofThomson Reuters clients. The owner of this announcement warrants that:

(i) the releases contained herein are protected by copyright and other applicable laws; and

(ii) they are solely responsible for the content, accuracy and originality of the information contained therein.

Source: Ship Finance International Limited via Thomson Reuters ONE[HUG#1614669]

Questions should be directed to:
Investor and Analyst
Harald Gurvin
Chief Financial Officer
Ship Finance Management AS
+47 23114009 / +47 97520363
Magnus T. Valeberg
Senior Vice President
Ship Finance Management AS
+47 23114012 / +47 93440960
Ole B. Hjertaker
Chief Executive Officer
Ship Finance Management AS
+47 23114011 / +47 90141243

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