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Global Ship Lease Reports Two-Times Higher Operating Revenue for the First Quarter of 2022

Global Ship Lease, Inc., an owner of containerships, announced today its unaudited results for the three months ended March 31, 2022.

First Quarter 2022
– Reported operating revenue of $153.6 million for the first quarter 2022, 2.1 times revenue of $73.0 million for the prior year period.

Reported net income available to common shareholders of $70.2 million for the first quarter of 2022, an increase of 1,571.4% or 16.7 times net income of $4.2 million for the prior year period. Normalized net income(3) after $4.6 million positive fair value adjustment on derivatives, a prepayment fee of $4.0 million on the full repayment of our Blue Ocean Junior Credit Facility and the associated non-cash write off of deferred financing charges of $0.1 million, was $69.7 million, 3.9 times normalized net income of $17.8 million for the prior year period which is after $5.8 million premium paid on the redemption in full of our 9.875% Senior Secured Notes due 2022 (“2022 Notes”) in January 2021, $3.7 million acceleration of deferred financing charges and $1.1 million acceleration of the amortization of the original issue discount both associated with the redemption of the 2022 Notes and the non-cash effect of $1.3 million for accelerated stock based compensation expense due to vesting and new awards of fully vested incentive shares, plus a prepayment fee of $1.6 million paid on the partial repayment of our Blue Ocean Junior Credit Facility.

– Generated $94.5 million of Adjusted EBITDA(3) for the first quarter 2022, 2.1 times Adjusted EBITDA (3) of $44.2 million for the prior year period.

– Earnings per share for the three months ended March 31, 2022 was $1.93, 14.8 times the earnings per share of $0.13 for the comparative period. Normalized earnings per share for the three months ended March 31, 2022 was $1.91, 3.4 times the Normalized earnings per share of $0.56 for the prior year period.

– Declared a dividend of $0.375 per Class A common share for the first quarter of 2022 to be paid on June 2, 2022 to common shareholders of record as of May 24, 2022.

– Authorized a program of $40.0 million for opportunistic share repurchases. During April 2022 we repurchased 184,684 Class A common shares at an average price of $26.66 per share for a total of $4.9 million.

– On April 5, 2022, completed the partial redemption of $28.5 million principal amount of our Senior Unsecured Notes due 2024 (the “2024 Notes”) at a price equal to 102.00% of the principal amount plus accrued and unpaid interest. Upon completion of the redemption the outstanding principal amount of our 2024 Notes was $89.0 million.
– In January 2022, agreed an amendment to the existing $268.0 million Syndicated Senior Secured Credit Facility with an outstanding balance of $213.2 million, to extend the maturity date from September 2024 to December 2026, favorably amend certain covenants, and release three vessels from the facility’s collateral basket, at an unchanged rate of LIBOR + 3.00%. The three vessels were subsequently used as collateral for a new $60.0 million syndicated senior secured debt facility, maturing in July 2026 and priced at LIBOR + 2.75%, which was used to fully repay the 10.00% Blue Ocean junior debt facility and for general corporate purposes.

– In February 2022, entered into USD 1-month LIBOR interest rate caps of 0.75% through fourth quarter 2026 on $507.9 million of floating rate debt, which reduces over time and represented the remaining balance of the outstanding floating rate debt, after entering a similar interest rate cap in December 2021, on $484.1 million of floating rate debt, which also reduces over time, leaving the Company fully hedged on its floating rate debt.

– Chartered the only vessel to come open year-to-date, our feeder Kumasi, for 37 – 39 months to Wan Hai at a rate of $38,000 per day, up from a rate of $9,300 per day for the preceding charter.

George Youroukos, Executive Chairman of Global Ship Lease, stated, “I am pleased to report that Global Ship Lease has delivered another quarter of earnings growth, even amid significant geopolitical activity, as additional highly attractive charters that we secured over the course of the last year have increasingly come into effect. With no vessels in GSL’s fully contracted fleet likely to be in the charter market until fourth quarter 2022, we have a high degree of certainty on our cashflows through at least the medium term, with many of our highest-earning charters extending well into the middle of the decade. This clarity and long-term contract coverage enables us to utilize our excess cash to increase our return of capital to shareholders, raising our dividend, as already announced, while also executing on our share repurchase program, buying back almost $5 million of our shares in the market.

Across the global chartered fleet, the vast majority of containerships are currently on extended charters, resulting in only very little current charter market activity. However, what little chartering there has been has continued to demonstrate how tight the market is. Looking forward, we continue to see highly constrained supply growth for all but the very largest containerships, and a high likelihood of continued supply chain disruption and congestion, which – almost regardless of demand growth – give us confidence about our ability to continue securing and extending long-term, reliable, contracted revenues from our high-quality fleet.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank Philippe Lemonnier, who has decided to stand down as a Director of Global Ship Lease. We have greatly valued his advice over the last five years and wish him well for the future. At the same time, I am delighted to welcome Captain Yoram (Rami) Neugeborn to our Board. Rami is a Master Mariner with more than 40 years’ experience in the shipping industry, most recently having been Manager of the Chartering and Sale and Purchase Department at ZISS (Zim Integrated Shipping Services Ltd.) for 12 years.”

Ian Webber, Chief Executive Officer of Global Ship Lease, commented, “Alongside our success in chartering our fleet and increasing our earnings in a long-term sustainable manner, we have remained focused on utilizing our increased financial strength to enhance our balance sheet. We have continued to eliminate our more expensive legacy debt, resulting in a reduction in our cost of debt from nearly 8% at the start of 2019 to 4.63% now. Similarly, between late 2021 and the first quarter of this year, we have put in place interest rate caps for all of our debt, so we are now fully hedged against rising interest rates. With no debt maturities through mid-2024, our contracted cashflows provide us with highly reliable coverage for our debt service and our return of capital to shareholders, while also putting us in a position to continue acting opportunistically to further strengthen our balance sheet and financial flexibility.”

SELECTED FINANCIAL DATA – UNAUDITED

Revenue and Utilization
Revenue from fixed-rate, mainly long-term, time-charters was $153.6 million in the three months ended March 31, 2022, up $80.6 million (or 110.4%) on revenue of $73.0 million for the prior year period. The period-on-period increase in revenue was principally due to (i) a 51.2% increase in ownership days, due to the net acquisition of 22 vessels in 2021, all of which were delivered after March 31, 2021, resulting in 5,850 ownership days in the quarter, compared to 3,870 in the first quarter 2021, (ii) increased revenue on charter renewals at higher rates on 13 vessels, (iii) $12.4 million credit from amortization of intangible liabilities arising on below-market charters attached to the vessel additions, and (iv) $4.4 million due to the modification of time charter contracts with a direct continuation at a different higher rate with the same charterer, partially offset by an increase in unplanned offhire days from 25 in the first quarter of 2021 to 82 days in the same quarter of 2022 and an increase in planned offhire days from 27 in the first quarter of 2021 to 227 in the same quarter of 2022. The 82 days of unplanned offhire in the first quarter of 2022 includes an incident of 16 days for main engine damage of one ship and offhire days due to COVID-19. The 227 days of planned offhire for drydockings in the first quarter 2022 were attributable to six regulatory drydockings, while in the comparative period of 2021, the 27 days of planned offhire were mainly attributable to one drydocking. Utilization for the first quarter of 2022 was 94.7% compared to utilization of 98.3% in the same period of the prior year.

The table below shows fleet utilization for the three months ended March 31, 2022 and 2021, and for the years ended December 31, 2021, 2020, 2019 and 2018.

Vessel Operating Expenses
Vessel operating expenses, which primarily include costs of crew, lubricating oil, repairs, maintenance, insurance and technical management fees, were up 62.4% to $39.4 million for the first quarter 2022, compared to $24.3 million in the comparative period. The increase of $15.2 million was mainly due to 1,980, or 51.2%, net additional ownership days in the first quarter 2022 as the result of the net increase of 22 vessels since April 1, 2021. The average cost per ownership day in the quarter was $6,743, compared to $6,275 for the prior year period, up $468 per day, or 7.5% mainly due to higher than average daily operating expenses of the vessels acquired in 2021 and also from increased crew expenses as a result of COVID-19 and the conflict in Ukraine, increased insurance costs and increased lubricant expenses as a result of higher oil prices.

Time Charter and Voyage Expenses
Time charter and voyage expenses comprise mainly commission paid to ship brokers, the cost of bunker fuel for owner’s account when a ship is off-hire or idle and miscellaneous owner’s costs associated with a ship’s voyage. Time charter and voyage expenses were $4.4 million for the first quarter 2022, compared to $1.8 million in the first quarter of 2021. The increase was mainly due to the net increase of 22 vessels since April 1, 2021, plus the increase in unplanned off hire days resulting in higher costs for bunker fuel for owner’s account.

Depreciation and Amortization
Depreciation and amortization for the first quarter 2022 was $19.9 million, compared to $12.4 million in the first quarter of 2021. The increase was mainly due to the net increase of 22 vessels since April 1, 2021 and the 14 drydockings that have been completed since April 1, 2021, including five drydockings for vessels acquired in 2021.

General and Administrative Expenses
General and administrative expenses were $3.9 million in the first quarter 2022, compared to $4.3 million in the first quarter of 2021. The decrease was mainly due to the non-cash effect of accelerated stock based compensation expenses due to vesting recorded in the first quarter of 2021. The average general and administrative expense per ownership day for the first quarter 2022 was $660, compared to $1,104 in the comparative period, a decrease of $444 or 40.2%.

Adjusted EBITDA
Adjusted EBITDA was $94.5 million for the first quarter 2022, up from $44.2 million for the first quarter of 2021, with the net increase being mainly due to the increased operating days from the net increase of 22 vessels since April 1, 2021 and increase revenue from charter renewals at higher rates.

Interest Expense and Interest Income
Debt as at March 31, 2022 totaled $1,078.5 million, comprising $791.8 million of secured debt collateralized by vessels, $169.2 million under sale and leaseback financing transactions and $117.5 million of unsecured indebtedness on our 2024 Notes. As of March 31, 2022, none of our vessels were unencumbered.

Debt as at March 31, 2021 totaled $769.0 million, comprising $694.1 million of secured debt collateralized by our vessels and $74.9 million of unsecured indebtedness on our 2024 Notes. As of March 31, 2021, none of our vessels were unencumbered.

Interest and other finance expenses for the first quarter 2022 were $21.3 million, down from $25.3 million for the first quarter of 2021, although total debt increased by a net amount of $309.5 million period on period or 40.2%. The decrease was mainly due to $5.8 million premium paid on the redemption in full of our 2022 Notes in January 2021, the non-cash write off of deferred financing charges of $3.7 million and of original issue discount of $1.1 million associated with the redemption of the 2022 Notes, the prepayment fee of $1.6 million paid on the partial repayment of our Blue Ocean Junior Credit Facility compared to the prepayment fee of $4.0 million paid on the full repayment of our Blue Ocean Junior Facility paid in the first quarter of 2022 and interest on new loans with Hamburg Commercial Bank AG and new sale and leaseback agreements with Neptune Maritime Leasing and with CMB Financial Leasing Co. Ltd., all for vessel acquisitions, offset by a decrease in our blended cost of debt from approximately 5.6% for first quarter 2021 to 4.7% for first quarter 2022, as a result of our refinancings although three month Libor has increased in first quarter of 2022 to 0.53% as compared to 0.20% in first quarter of 2021.

Interest income for the first quarter 2022 was $0.25 million, up from $0.24 million for the first quarter of 2021.

Other Income, Net
Other income, net was $0.4 million in the first quarter 2022, the same as in first quarter of 2021.

Fair value adjustment on derivatives
In February 2022, we entered into two USD 1-month LIBOR interest rate caps of 0.75% through fourth quarter 2026 on $507.9 million of floating rate debt. The second interest rate cap was not designated as a cash flow hedge and therefore the positive fair value adjustment of $4.6 million as at March 31, 2022 was recorded though our statement of income.

Earnings Allocated to Preferred Shares
Our Series B Preferred Shares carry a coupon of 8.75%, the cost of which for the first quarter 2022 was $2.4 million, compared to $1.5 million for the first quarter 2021. The increase was due to additional Series B Preferred Shares issued under our ATM program since April 1, 2021.
Net Income Available to Common Shareholders
Net income available to common shareholders for the three months ended March 31, 2022 was $70.2 million after the $4.6 million positive fair value adjustment on derivatives, the prepayment fee of $4.0 million on the full repayment of our Blue Ocean Junior Credit Facility and the associated non-cash write off of deferred financing charges of $0.1 million. Net income available to common shareholders for the three months ended March 31, 2021 was $4.2 million, after $5.8 million premium paid on the redemption in full of our 2022 Notes in January 2021, $3.7 million acceleration of deferred financing charges and $1.1 million acceleration of the amortization of the original issue discount both associated with the redemption of the 2022 Notes and the non-cash effect of $1.3 million for accelerated stock based compensation expense due to vesting and new awards of fully vested incentive shares, plus a prepayment fee of $1.6 million paid on the partial repayment of our Blue Ocean Junior Credit Facility.

Earnings per share for the three months ended March 31, 2022 was $1.93, an increase of 1,384.6% from the earnings per share for the comparative period, which was $0.13.

Normalized net income (a non-GAAP financial measure) for the three months ended March 31, 2022, was $69.7 million after the $4.6 million of positive fair value adjustment on derivatives, $4.0 million prepayment fee paid on the full repayment of our Blue Ocean Junior Credit Facility and the associated non-cash write off of deferred financing charges of $0.1 million. Normalized net income for the three months ended March 31, 2021, was $17.8 million, before the $5.8 million premium paid on the redemption in full of our 2022 Notes in January 2021, the acceleration of deferred financing charges of $3.7 million and the acceleration of the amortization of the original issue discount of $1.1 million and the non-cash effect of $1.3 million for accelerated stock based compensation expense due to vesting and new awards of fully vested incentive shares, plus a prepayment fee of $1.6 million paid on the partial repayment of our Blue Ocean Junior Credit Facility.

Normalized earnings per share for the three months ended March 31, 2022 was $1.91, an increase of 241.1% from Normalized earnings per share for the comparative period, which was $0.56.

Fleet
As at May 8, 2022, we had 65 containerships in our fleet.
Source: Global Ship Lease Inc.

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