Orbit Garant Drilling Inc. reports second quarter 2009 financial results



    VAL-D'OR, QC, Feb. 12 /CNW/ - Orbit Garant Drilling Inc. (TSX: OGD) today
announced its financial results for the second quarter of fiscal 2009, ended
December 31, 2008. All dollar amounts are in Canadian currency unless
otherwise stated. Percentage calculations are based on numbers in the
financial statements and may not correspond to rounded figures presented in
this release.

    Highlights

    
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                      6 months    6 months
                                                        ended       ended
                                                    December 31, December 31,
                          Fiscal 2009  Fiscal 2008      2008         2007
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Amounts in C$000
     except earnings
     per share                     Q2           Q2
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Revenue                   $26,106      $18,053      $49,222      $35,432
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Gross Profit                8,648        6,316       16,171       12,564
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Gross Margin                33.1%        35.0%        32.9%        35.5%
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    General & Administrative    1,888        1,058        3,519        2,114
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Amortization                1,990        1,620        3,867        3,261
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Ebitda Normalized           6,876        5,307       12,852       10,575
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Income Tax                  1,520          175        2,854          909
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Net Earnings                3,214        2,972        5,862        5,136
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Net earnings per
     common share
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
      - Basic                   $0.10        $0.12        $0.18        $0.21
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
      - Diluted                 $0.10        $0.12        $0.18        $0.20
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Total Metres Drilled      280,760      211,321      514,213      412,497
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    

    "We are pleased with our results in the second quarter," said Eric
Alexandre, President and Chief Operating Officer. "Our success in the quarter
is attributable to our continuing strategy of focusing on major and
intermediate sized mining companies, which are better able to withstand the
effects of the current economic weakness, as well as our exposure to the gold
business, which has remained comparatively stronger than our work for
customers in base metals".

    Second Quarter Results

    In the second quarter ended December 31, 2008, Orbit Garant generated
total revenues of $26.1 million, an increase of $8.0 million or 44.6% compared
to Q2 fiscal 2008.
    Drilling Canada revenue was $24.4 million compared to $14.9 million for
the Q2 fiscal 2008 period, representing an increase of 63.7%. This strong
increase was the result of the new specialized rigs that were built at the
beginning of 2008 to service the new contracts with Agnico Eagle and Newmont
as well as the acquisition of Forage+.
    Drilling International revenue was $1.2 million, down by $1.1 million
from the same period in fiscal 2008 due to lower activity.
    Manufacturing Canada revenue was $0.4 million, down by $0.4 million from
the Q2 fiscal 2008. Third party demand for drills has experienced a slowdown
due to the current economic decline. Through its subsidiary Soudure Royale
Concept, Orbit Garant maintains the capacity to build new drills, as well as
utilizing Soudure Royale to build supplies and support equipment.
    The gross margin for the second quarter ended December 31, 2008 decreased
to 33.1% from 35% in the corresponding period in the previous year. The
decline is mainly a result of lower activity in the Drilling International
division.
    Total gross profit in Q2 2009 was $8.6 million compared to $6.3 million
in the comparable fiscal 2008 period, representing an increase of 36.9%.
    General and administrative expenses (G&A) totaled $1.9 million during Q2
fiscal 2009, compared to $1.1 million in Q2 fiscal 2008, an increase
attributable to additional administrative expenses incurred to sustain company
growth and operating as a public company.
    Consolidated normalized EBITDA in Q2 fiscal 2009 was $6.9 million
compared to $5.3 million in Q2 fiscal 2008, representing an increase of 29.6%.
    Income tax recorded totaled $1.5 million in Q2 fiscal 2009 compared to
$0.2 million in the comparable 2008 period as some adjustments took place to
include changes to future income tax rates.
    Net earnings for the quarter totaled $3.2 million compared to $3.0
million in the comparable period last year, representing $0.10 per common
share in the Q2 2009 quarter compared to $0.12 per common share in Q2 fiscal
2008.

    Recent Developments

    During the quarter, Orbit Garant acquired all issued and outstanding
shares of 9129-5632 Quebec Inc. (doing business as Forage +), a specialized
drilling company operating seven drilling rigs. As part of the transaction,
Orbit Garant acquired a 100,000 metre drilling services contract with Osisko
Mining Corporation.
    Also, in the quarter, Orbit Garant commenced its specialized drilling
services contract with Agnico Eagle Ltd at its Meadowbank project in the
Nunavut Territory and is continuing to prepare for the specialized drilling
contract for Newmont Mining Corporation's Hope Bay project, scheduled to begin
February 2009.

    Six Months ended December 31, 2008

    Orbit Garant is reporting record gross revenue and meters drilled for the
first six months of its fiscal year.
    Revenues totaled $49.2 million for the six month period ended December
31, 2008, an increase of $13.8 million, or 38.9%, from $35.4 million in the
comparable period a year earlier.
    Gross margin for the first half of the fiscal year was 32.9% compared to
35.5% for the corresponding period last year. This decrease is correlated with
the decrease in International Drilling activity, which typically generates
high margins.
    Overall gross profit for the first 6 months of the fiscal year was $16.2
million, an increase of $3.6 million from $12.6 million in the comparable
six-month period last year.
    Net earnings for the six month period ended December 31, 2008 were $5.9
million or $0.18 per share ($0.18 per share diluted) compared to $5.1 million
or $0.21 per share ($0.20 per share diluted) in the first half of fiscal 2008.
    "Despite the current downturn in the economy, the fundamentals of our
strategy remain proven and positive. We are working constantly to ensure we
maintain our strong balance sheet and leading market position. We continue to
align ourselves with well-financed intermediate and major mining companies,
68% of which are gold focused, and continue our focus on maintaining our
forward momentum," added Eric Alexandre.
    Orbit Garant completed its Initial Public Offering (IPO) on June 26,
2008. The company was created through the combination of Quebec-based drilling
services providers Orbit and Garant on January 31, 2007 and the acquisition of
Drift Exploration Drilling Inc. on April 16, 2007. Full Financial Statements
and Management's Discussion and Analysis are available on the Company website
at www.orbitgarant.com and at www.sedar.com.

    Conference Call

    A conference call for analysts and interested listeners will be held
Thursday, February 12, 2009 at 1:00 p.m. (ET). The call-in numbers for
participants are 416-644-3420 and 800-732-9303. A live audio feed of the call
will also be available on the Internet at:
http://www.newswire.ca/en/webcast/viewEvent.cgi?eventID=2534180
    A replay of the call will be available from 3:00 p.m. (ET) on Thursday,
February 12, 2009 until 11:59 p.m. on Thursday, February 19, 2009. To access
the replay, call 416 640 1917 or 877 289 8525 enter pass code number 21296481,
and then press the pound (No.) key. The replay can also be accessed over the
Internet at the above address.

    About Orbit Garant

    Orbit Garant is one of the largest Canadian-based drilling companies,
providing both underground and surface drilling services in Canada and
internationally, operating with 134 drills and more than 500 employees. Orbit
Garant provides services to major, intermediate and junior mining companies,
through each stage of mining exploration, development and production.

    Forward-looking information

    This press release may contain forward-looking statements (within the
meaning of applicable securities laws) relating to business of Orbit Garant
Drilling Inc. (the "Company") and the environment in which it operates.
Forward-looking statements are identified by words such as "believe",
"anticipate", "expect", "intend", "plan", "will", "may" and other similar
expressions. These statements are based on the Company's expectations,
estimates, forecasts and projections. They are not guarantees of future
performance and involve risks and uncertainties that are difficult to control
or predict. These risks and uncertainties are discussed in the Company's
regulatory filings available at www.sedar.com. There can be no assurance that
forward-looking statements will prove to be accurate as actual outcomes and
results may differ materially from those expressed in these forward-looking
statements. Readers, therefore, should not place undue reliance on any such
forward-looking statements. Further, a forward-looking statement speaks only
as of the date on which such statement is made. The Company undertakes no
obligation to publicly update any such statement or to reflect new information
or the occurrence of future events or circumstances.

    %SEDAR: 00026932E




For further information:

For further information: Eric Alexandre, President and Chief Operating
Officer, (819) 824-2707 Ext. 233; Derek Henderson, Investor Relations, (416)
447-4740 Ext. 232


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