Canfor Pulp Products Inc. announces fourth quarter 2016 results and quarterly dividend

VANCOUVER, Feb. 8, 2017 /CNW/ - Canfor Pulp Products Inc. ("CPPI") (TSX: CFX) today reported net income of $10.1 million, or $0.15 per share, for the fourth quarter of 2016, compared to $22.4 million, or $0.34 per share, for the third quarter of 2016 and $29.7 million, or $0.43 per share, for the fourth quarter of 2015.  For the year ended December 31, 2016, the Company's net income was $57.8 million, or $0.86 per share, compared to $106.6 million, or $1.52 per share, for 2015.

The following table summarizes selected financial information for the Company for the comparative periods:



Q4

2016


Q3

2016


YTD

2016


Q4

2015


YTD

2015

(millions of Canadian dollars, except per share amounts)






Sales

$

257.8

$

291.6

$

1,101.9

$

330.8

$

1,174.7

Operating income before amortization

$

42.1

$

50.0

$

172.0

$

56.2

$

208.4

Operating income

$

22.9

$

31.0

$

98.2

$

38.6

$

143.2

Net income

$

10.1

$

22.4

$

57.8

$

29.7

$

106.6

Net income per share, basic and diluted

$

0.15

$

0.34

$

0.86

$

0.43

$

1.52

Adjusted net income

$

10.1

$

22.4

$

57.8

$

29.0

$

111.8

Adjusted net income per share, basic and diluted

$

0.15

$

0.34

$

0.86

$

0.42

$

1.59

 

The Company had no items affecting comparability in the fourth quarter of 2016 or for the year ended December 31, 2016.  Adjusted net income was $29.0 million, or $0.42 per share, for the fourth quarter of 2015, and $111.8 million, or $1.59 per share, for 2015.

The Company reported operating income of $22.9 million for the fourth quarter of 2016, a decrease of $8.1 million from $31.0 million reported for the third quarter of 2016.  The decrease in operating income was largely attributable to adverse weather conditions, which impacted both shipment logistics and operations through the period.  Sales realizations for Northern Bleached Softwood Kraft ("NBSK") pulp were largely unchanged quarter-over-quarter, while Bleached Chemi-Thermo Mechanical Pulp ("BCTMP") sales realizations saw a marked improvement.  The Company's net income for the fourth quarter of 2016 included the pre-tax write-down of $7.0 million of advances made in connection with the biofuels technology initiative with Licella Fibre Fuels Pty. Ltd. ("Licella"), a subsidiary of Ignite Energy Resources Ltd.  Notwithstanding the future benefits that may result from this innovative effort, the write-down reflected the research and development nature of the advances.

Global softwood pulp markets were relatively stable through most of the fourth quarter of 2016 as evidenced by the average China US-dollar NBSK pulp list price, as published by RISI, remaining at US$595 per tonne.  NBSK pulp unit sales realizations were broadly in line with the third quarter of 2016, as a slightly weaker Canadian dollar was offset by increased pricing pressure in North America.  BCTMP unit sales realizations increased significantly, reflecting the continued improvement in BCTMP markets.  Energy revenues moderately increased during the current quarter, for the most part, reflecting increased power generation and seasonally higher energy prices. 

Pulp shipments were down 14% from the previous quarter principally reflecting weather-related impacts on shipments, including a delayed vessel shipment over the year end.  Pulp production was 3% lower than the previous quarter, primarily due to the severe weather conditions, which more than offset the impacts of scheduled maintenance outages in the previous quarter.  Pulp unit manufacturing costs were up slightly from the previous quarter, reflecting higher energy usage combined with seasonally higher energy costs, as well as the unfavourable per unit impact of lower production volumes.

Operating income in the Company's paper segment at $8.1 million for the fourth quarter of 2016 was up $0.9 million from the third quarter of 2016, largely reflecting slightly higher paper unit sales realizations in the current quarter, principally due to a 2% weaker Canadian dollar and lower manufacturing unit costs resulting from higher production volumes during the current quarter. 

Commenting on the 2016 year, CPPI's Chief Executive Officer, Don Kayne, said, "The Company delivered another solid year in 2016, maintaining steady operational performance and a strong balance sheet, despite market pressures and weather challenges in the fourth quarter".

For the month of January 2017, the Company announced an increase of US$20 per tonne for NBSK pulp list price to China, equating to US$630 per tonne, and an increase of US$10 per tonne for BCTMP.  For the month of February 2017, the Company announced a further US$20 per tonne increase to both its NBSK pulp and BCTMP list prices to China.  Global softwood markets are currently seeing positive pricing momentum, for both NBSK pulp and BCTMP, and this is anticipated to continue into the second quarter of 2017.      

On February 8, 2017, the Board of Directors declared a quarterly dividend of $0.0625 per share, payable on February 28, 2017 to the shareholders of record on February 21, 2017.

Refer to the Company's annual Management's Discussion and Analysis for further discussion on the Company's results for the fourth quarter of 2016 on page 19.

Additional Information and Conference Call 
A conference call to discuss the fourth quarter's financial and operating results will be held on Thursday, February 9, 2017 at 8:00 AM Pacific time.  To participate in the call, please dial 416-764-8688 or Toll-Free 888-390-0546.  For instant replay access until February 23, 2017, please dial 888-390-0541 and enter participant pass code 073031#.  The conference call will be webcast live and will be available at www.canfor.com.  This news release, the attached financial statements and a presentation used during the conference call can be accessed via the Company's website at http://www.canfor.com/investor-relations/overview.

Non-IFRS Measures and Forward Looking Statements
Operating Income before Amortization and Adjusted Shareholder Net Income and Adjusted Shareholder Net Income per Share are not generally accepted earnings measures and should not be considered as an alternative to net income or cash flows as determined in accordance with IFRS. Refer to the Company's Annual Management's Discussion and Analysis for a reconciliation of Operating Income before Amortization to Operating Income and Adjusted Shareholder Net Income to Net Income reported in accordance with IFRS. 

Certain statements in this press release constitute "forward-looking statements" which involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such statements.  Words such as "expects", "anticipates", "projects", "intends", "plans", "will", "believes", "seeks", "estimates", "should", "may", "could", and variations of such words and similar expressions are intended to identify such forward-looking statements.  These statements are based on management's current expectations and beliefs and actual events or results may differ materially.  There are many factors that could cause such actual events or results expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements to differ materially from any future results expressed or implied by such statements.  Forward-looking statements are based on current expectations and the Company assumes no obligation to update such information to reflect later events or developments, except as required by law.

CPPI is a leading global supplier of pulp and paper products with operations in the central interior of British Columbia ("BC") employing approximately 1,300 people throughout the organization.   Canfor Pulp owns and operates three mills in Prince George, BC with a total capacity of 1.1 million tonnes of Premium Reinforcing Northern Bleached Softwood Kraft Pulp and 140,000 tonnes of kraft paper, as well as one mill in Taylor, BC with an annual production capacity of 220,000 tonnes of Bleached Chemi-Thermo Mechanical Pulp ("BCTMP").  Canfor Pulp is the largest North American and one of the largest global producers of market NBSK Pulp.  CPPI shares are traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol CFX.


Canfor Pulp Products Inc.
Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets

 

 

(millions of Canadian dollars, unaudited)

As at
December 31,
2016

As at
December 31,
2015

ASSETS






Current assets






Cash and cash equivalents


$

51.9

$

17.5

Accounts receivable   

- Trade                            



75.9


101.8


- Other



16.8


17.5

Inventories



166.5


163.8

Prepaid expenses



5.1


7.5

Total current assets



316.2


308.1

Property, plant and equipment



518.7


532.3

Other long-term assets



2.2


0.9

Total assets


$

837.1

$

841.3







LIABILITIES






Current liabilities






Accounts payable and accrued liabilities


$

125.4

$

144.2

Total current liabilities



125.4


144.2

Long-term debt



50.0


50.0

Retirement benefit obligations



109.1


93.0

Other long-term provisions



6.2


6.2

Deferred income taxes, net



61.7


68.2

Total liabilities


$

352.4

$

361.6







EQUITY






Share capital


$

491.6

$

508.2

Retained earnings (deficit)



(6.9)


(28.5)

Total equity


$

484.7

$

479.7

Total liabilities and equity


$

837.1

$

841.3


Subsequent Event (Note 7)

The accompanying notes are an integral part of these condensed consolidated interim financial statements. 

 

APPROVED BY THE BOARD




"S.E. Bracken-Horrocks"                                                       

"M.J. Korenberg"

Director, S.E. Bracken-Horrocks                                             

Director, M.J. Korenberg

 

 

Canfor Pulp Products Inc.
Condensed Consolidated Statements of Income


3 months ended December 31,

12 months ended December 31,

(millions of Canadian dollars, except per share data, unaudited)

2016

2015

2016

2015










Sales

$

257.8

$

330.8

$

1,101.9

$

1,174.7










Costs and expenses










Manufacturing and product costs   


173.4


220.5


746.8


769.3


Freight and other distribution costs


35.1


47.0


155.5


169.0


Amortization


19.2


17.6


73.8


65.2


Selling and administration costs


7.2


7.1


27.6


28.0



234.9


292.2


1,003.7


1,031.5










Operating income


22.9


38.6


98.2


143.2










Finance expense, net


(1.9)


(1.7)


(6.6)


(6.0)

Gain (loss) on derivative financial instruments


-


0.9


-


(8.8)

Other income (expense), net (Note 6)


(5.1)


1.9


(10.4)


14.5

Net income before income taxes


15.9


39.7


81.2


142.9

Income tax expense (Note 2)


(5.8)


(10.0)


(23.4)


(36.3)

Net income

$

10.1

$

29.7

$

57.8

$

106.6










Net income per common share: (in Canadian dollars)









Attributable to equity shareholders of the Company










- Basic and diluted (Note 3)

$

0.15

$

0.43

$

0.86

$

1.52


The accompanying notes are an integral part of these condensed consolidated interim financial statements. 

 

 

Canfor Pulp Products Inc.
Condensed Consolidated Statements of Other Comprehensive Income (Loss)


3 months ended December 31,

12 months ended December 31,

(millions of Canadian dollars, unaudited)

2016

2015

2016

2015










Net income

$

10.1

$

29.7

$

57.8

$

106.6

Other comprehensive income (loss)









Items that will not be recycled through net income:










Defined benefit plan actuarial gains (losses)


3.5


0.7


(15.5)


7.6


Income tax recovery (expense) on defined benefit plan











actuarial gains (losses) (Note 2)                                        


(1.0)


(0.2)


4.0


(2.0)



2.5


0.5


(11.5)


5.6

Items that may be recycled through net income:










Change in fair value of available-for-sale financial instruments,











net of tax


(0.2)


-


-


-

Other comprehensive income (loss), net of tax


2.3


0.5


(11.5)


5.6

Total comprehensive income

$

12.4

$

30.2

$

46.3

$

112.2

 

Condensed Consolidated Statements of Changes in Equity


3 months ended December 31,

12 months ended December 31,

(millions of Canadian dollars, unaudited)

2016

2015

2016

2015










Share capital









Balance at beginning of period

$

491.6

$

513.4

$

508.2

$

522.1

Share purchases (Note 3)


-


(5.2)


(16.6)


(13.9)

Balance at end of period

$

491.6

$

508.2

$

491.6

$

508.2










Retained earnings (deficit)









Balance at beginning of period

$

(15.3)

$

(49.8)

$

(28.5)

$

(32.5)

Net income


10.1


29.7


57.8


106.6

Defined benefit plan actuarial gains (losses), net of tax


2.5


0.5


(11.5)


5.6

Dividends declared


(4.2)


(4.4)


(16.9)


(96.5)

Share purchases (Note 3)


-


(4.5)


(7.8)


(11.7)

Balance at end of period

$

(6.9)

$

(28.5)

$

(6.9)

$

(28.5)










Accumulated other comprehensive income









Balance at beginning of period

$

0.2

$

-

$

-

$

-

Change in fair value of available-for-sale financial instruments, net










of tax                                                                                          


(0.2)


-


-


-

Balance at end of period

$

-

$

-

$

-

$

-










Total equity

$

484.7

$

479.7

$

484.7

$

479.7


The accompanying notes are an integral part of these condensed consolidated interim financial statements. 

 

 

Canfor Pulp Products Inc.
Condensed Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows


3 months ended December 31,

 12 months ended December 31,

 (millions of Canadian dollars, unaudited)

2016

2015

2016

2015










Cash generated from (used in):









Operating activities










Net income

$

10.1

$

29.7

$

57.8

$

106.6


Items not affecting cash:











Amortization


19.2


17.6


73.8


65.2



Income tax expense


5.8


10.0


23.4


36.3



Changes in mark-to-market value of derivative financial instruments


-


(2.3)


-


(1.0)



Employee future benefits


1.4


1.3


5.1


5.5



Finance expense, net


1.9


1.7


6.6


6.0



Write-down of advances to Licella (Note 6)


7.0


-


7.0


-



Other, net


0.8


0.6


(0.8)


(0.4)


Defined benefit plan contributions, net


(2.1)


(1.7)


(8.3)


(3.9)


Income taxes paid, net


(0.8)


(2.0)


(33.6)


(36.0)



43.3


54.9


131.0


178.3


Net change in non-cash working capital (Note 4)


3.8


(11.8)


19.0


(32.9)



47.1


43.1


150.0


145.4

Financing activities










Finance expenses paid


(1.1)


(0.7)


(3.2)


(2.7)


Dividends paid


(4.2)


(4.4)


(16.9)


(96.5)


Share purchases (Note 3)


-


(9.6)


(24.7)


(25.3)



(5.3)


(14.7)


(44.8)


(124.5)

Investing activities










Additions to property, plant and equipment, net


(18.3)


(27.6)


(64.0)


(68.3)


Advances to Licella (Note 6)


(3.5)


-


(7.0)


-


Acquisition of Taylor pulp mill


-


-


-


(12.6)


Other, net


-


0.1


0.2


0.7



(21.8)


(27.5)


(70.8)


(80.2)

Increase (decrease) in cash and cash equivalents*


20.0


0.9


34.4


(59.3)

Cash and cash equivalents at beginning of period*


31.9


16.6


17.5


76.8

Cash and cash equivalents at end of period*

$

51.9

$

17.5

$

51.9

$

17.5


*Cash and cash equivalents include cash on hand less unpresented cheques.

The accompanying notes are an integral part of these condensed consolidated interim financial statements.

 

 

Canfor Pulp Products Inc.
Notes to the Condensed Consolidated Financial Statements
Three months and twelve months ended December 31, 2016 and 2015
(unaudited, millions of Canadian dollars unless otherwise noted)

1. Basis of Preparation

These condensed consolidated interim financial statements (the "financial statements") include the accounts of Canfor Pulp Products Inc. ("CPPI") and its subsidiary entities, hereinafter referred to as "CPPI" or "the Company."  At December 31, 2016, Canfor Corporation ("Canfor") held a 53.6% interest in CPPI, an increase of 1.7% from December 31, 2015 as a result of share purchases in 2016 (Note 3).

These financial statements do not include all of the disclosures required by International Financial Reporting Standards ("IFRS") for interim and annual financial statements. Additional disclosures relevant to the understanding of these financial statements, including the accounting policies applied, can be found in the Company's Annual Report for the year ended December 31, 2016, available at www.canforpulp.com or www.sedar.com.

These financial statements were authorized for issue by the Company's Board of Directors on February 8, 2017.

Accounting Standards Issued and Not Applied

In May 2014, the International Accounting Standards Board ("IASB") issued IFRS 15, Revenue from Contracts with Customers, which will supersede IAS 18, Revenue, IAS 11, Construction Contracts and related interpretations. The new standard is effective for annual periods beginning on or after January 1, 2018. The Company has performed a preliminary assessment of the impact of the new standard, and currently anticipates no significant impact on its financial statements.

In July 2014, the IASB issued IFRS 9, Financial Instruments. The required adoption date for IFRS 9 is January 1, 2018 and the Company does not anticipate the new standard to have a significant impact on its financial statements.

In January 2016, the IASB issued IFRS 16, Leases, which will supersede IAS 17, Leases and related interpretations. The required adoption date for IFRS 16 is January 1, 2019 and the Company is in the process of assessing the impact on the financial statements of this new standard.

2.  Income Taxes


3 months ended December 31,

  12 months ended December 31,

(millions of Canadian dollars, unaudited)

2016

2015

2016

2015

Current                                 

$

(8.1)

$

(7.5)

$

(25.9)

$

(35.6)

Deferred


2.3


(2.5)


2.5


(0.7)

Income tax expense

$

(5.8)

$

(10.0)

$

(23.4)

$

(36.3)

The reconciliation of income taxes calculated at the statutory rate to the actual income tax provision is as follows:


  3 months ended December 31,

   12 months ended December 31,

(millions of Canadian dollars, unaudited)

2016

2015

2016

2015

Income tax expense at statutory rate of 26.0%                          

$

(4.1)

$

(10.4)

$

(21.1)

$

(37.2)

Add (deduct):









Permanent difference from capital gains and other non-










deductible items                                                          


(1.8)


(0.1)


(1.8)


(0.1)

Entities with different income tax rates and other tax










adjustments


0.1


0.5


(0.5)


1.0

Income tax expense

$

(5.8)

$

(10.0)

$

(23.4)

$

(36.3)

 

In addition to the amounts recorded to net income, a tax expense of $1.0 million was recorded in other comprehensive income (loss) for the three months ended December 31, 2016 (three months ended December 31, 2015 - expense of $0.2 million) in relation to actuarial gains/losses on the defined benefit plans. For the twelve months ended December 31, 2016, a tax recovery of $4.0 was recorded in other comprehensive income (loss) (twelve months ended December 31, 2015 - expense of $2.0 million).

3. Earnings per Share and Normal Course Issuer Bid

Basic net income per share is calculated by dividing the net income available to common shareholders by the weighted average number of common shares outstanding during the period. 


   3 months ended December 31,

 12 months ended December 31,


2016

2015

2016

2015

Weighted average number of common shares

66,699,368

69,428,956

67,519,888

70,105,543

On March 7, 2016, the Company renewed its normal course issuer bid whereby it can purchase for cancellation up to 3,446,139 common shares or approximately 5% of its issued and outstanding common shares as of March 1, 2016. The renewed normal course issuer bid is set to expire on March 6, 2017. During the fourth quarter of 2016, CPPI did not purchase any common shares. As at December 31, 2016 and February 8, 2017, there were 66,699,368 common shares of the Company outstanding and Canfor's ownership interest in CPPI was 53.6%.

4. Net Change in Non-Cash Working Capital


         3 months ended December 31,

  12 months ended December 31,


(millions of Canadian dollars, unaudited)


2016


2015


2016


2015

Accounts receivable

$

8.8

$

(40.2)

$

24.2

$

(49.7)

Inventories


(12.6)


14.0


(2.9)


(4.8)

Prepaid expenses


6.2


3.5


2.5


4.4

Accounts payable and accrued liabilities


1.4


10.9


(4.8)


17.2

Net decrease (increase) in non-cash working capital

$

3.8

$

(11.8)

$

19.0

$

(32.9)











 

5. Segment Information

The Company has two reportable segments, which operate as separate business units and represent separate product lines. 

Sales between the pulp and paper segments are accounted for at prices that approximate fair value. These include sales of slush pulp from the pulp segment to the paper segment.

Information regarding the operations of each reportable segment is included in the following table.

(millions of Canadian dollars, unaudited)


      Pulp


     Paper


Unallocated


Elimination
Adjustment

Consolidated

3 months ended December 31, 2016











Sales to external customers

$

215.9

$

41.8

$

0.1

$

-

$

257.8

Sales to other segments


22.8


-


-


(22.8)


-

Operating income (loss)


18.1


8.1


(3.3)


-


22.9

Amortization


18.1


1.0


0.1


-


19.2

Capital expenditures1


16.9


0.4


1.0


-


18.3

3 months ended December 31, 2015











Sales to external customers

$

286.9

$

43.6

$

0.3

$

-

$

330.8

Sales to other segments


23.6


-


-


(23.6)


-

Operating income (loss)


34.4


6.9


(2.7)


-


38.6

Amortization


16.5


1.0


0.1


-


17.6

Capital expenditures1


27.2


0.4


-


-


27.6











12 months ended December 31, 2016











Sales to external customers

$

924.2

$

176.1

$

1.6

$

-

$

1,101.9

Sales to other segments


85.9


-


-


(85.9)


-

Operating income (loss)


79.6


29.7


(11.1)


-


98.2

Amortization


69.9


3.8


0.1


-


73.8

Capital expenditures1


60.9


1.7


1.4


-


64.0

Identifiable assets


719.9


55.6


61.6


-


837.1

12 months ended December 31, 2015











Sales to external customers

$

1,006.1

$

166.7

$

1.9

$

-

$

1,174.7

Sales to other segments


93.4


-


-


(93.4)


-

Operating income (loss)


127.0


27.6


(11.4)


-


143.2

Amortization


61.5


3.6


0.1


-


65.2

Capital expenditures1


62.5


5.8


-


-


68.3

Identifiable assets


746.4


64.0


30.9


-


841.3


1Capital expenditures represent cash paid for capital assets during the periods and include capital expenditures that were partially financed by government grants. Capital expenditures for the twelve months ended December 31, 2015 exclude the assets purchased as part of the acquisition of the Taylor pulp mill.

 

6. Licella Pulp Joint Venture

On May 27, 2016, CPPI and Licella Fibre Fuel Pty Ltd. ("Licella") agreed to form a joint venture under the name Licella Pulp Joint Venture to investigate opportunities to integrate Licella's Catalytic Hydrothermal Reactor platform into CPPI's pulp mills to economically convert biomass into next generation biofuels and biochemicals. Licella is a subsidiary of Ignite Energy Resources Ltd. ("IER") an Australian energy technology development company.

Under IFRS 11, Joint Arrangements, the joint venture is classified as a joint operation and CPPI will recognize its assets, liabilities and transactions, including its share of those incurred jointly, in its consolidated financial statements. For the year ended December 31, 2016, the Company's share of the joint venture's expenses was $1.6 million, which has been recognized in manufacturing and product costs. The Company is required to contribute the first $20.0 million of any funding requirements, including cash and non-cash contributions, to the joint venture.

In conjunction with the joint venture agreement and CPPI's commitment to innovation and the development of potentially transforming technology, CPPI provided a convertible credit facility to IER, the parent company of Licella, which matures on June 21, 2019. The advances on this credit facility are convertible, at CPPI's option, into common shares of IER.

With regards to the convertible credit facility, during 2016, CPPI advanced $7.0 million to Licella and exercised its option to convert $3.5 million of the amount advanced into common shares of IER.  Due to the inherent nature of this type of innovation and technology development, CPPI considers these advances to be substantially research and development in nature. As a result, at December 31, 2016, CPPI has recognized losses of $7.0 million in other income (expense).  This reflects the Company's consideration of the intrinsic risk associated with these advances.

7. Subsequent Event

On February 8, 2017, the Board of Directors declared a quarterly dividend of $0.0625 per share, payable on February 28, 2017, to shareholders of record on February 21, 2017.

SOURCE Canfor Pulp Products Inc.

For further information: Media Contact: Corinne Stavness, Canfor's Senior Director, External Affairs & Communications, (604) 661-5225, Corinne.Stavness@canfor.com; Investor Contact: Pat Elliott, Canfor's Vice President & Treasurer, (604) 661-5441, Patrick.Elliott@canfor.com; Katrina Wilson, Corporate Controller, (604) 661-5349, Katrina.Wilson@canforpulp.com


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