EXHIBIT 99.1

US Ecology Announces First Quarter 2018 Results

FIRST QUARTER HIGHLIGHTS COMPARED TO PRIOR YEAR:

  • Revenue $120.1 million, up 9%
  • Base Business growth of 2%; Event Business growth of 8%
  • Field and Industrial Services revenue growth of 16%
  • Operating income growth of 11%
  • Recognized a $2 million cash gain, or $0.07 per diluted share, on issuance of a property easement
  • Net income of $9.2 million
  • Diluted earnings per share of $0.42
  • Adjusted earnings per share of $0.36, up 57%
  • Adjusted EBITDA of $24.5 million, up 4%    

2018 BUSINESS OUTLOOK REAFFIRMED:

  • Diluted earnings per share expected to range from $2.15 to $2.34 per share
  • Adjusted EBITDA expected to range from $122 million to $128 million
  • Capital expenditures expected to range from $39 million to $42 million

BOISE, Idaho, May 03, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- US Ecology, Inc. (NASDAQ:ECOL) (“the Company”) today reported total revenue of $120.1 million and net income of $9.2 million, or $0.42 per diluted share, for the quarter-ended March 31, 2018.  Adjusted earnings per share, which excludes a gain on the issuance of a property easement, foreign currency translation gains and losses, and business development expenses, was $0.36 per diluted share in the first quarter of 2018, up 57% from the first quarter of 2017.

“Operating results and adjusted EBITDA were in line with our expectations for the first quarter,” commented Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Jeff Feeler.  “Continued positive momentum in Event Business for the Environmental Services segment led to an 8% increase over the first quarter of 2017.  We also saw our Base Business grow 2% on top of what was a very strong quarter a year ago.  The Field and Industrial Services segment had a solid quarter, with revenues up 16% compared to the first quarter of 2017.”

For the first quarter of 2018, Environmental Services (“ES”) segment revenue was $86.5 million, up from $81.3 million in the first quarter of 2017. This increase consisted of 5% growth in treatment and disposal (“T&D”) revenue and 12% growth in transportation revenue compared to the first quarter of 2017. Field and Industrial Services (“FIS”) segment revenue was $33.6 million for the first quarter of 2018, up 16% from $28.9 million in the same period of 2017, reflecting continued growth in our Total Waste Management and Small Quantity Generation business lines as well as stronger overall market conditions.

Gross profit for the first quarter of 2018 was $35.7 million, up 12% from $31.9 million in the same quarter last year. ES segment gross profit was $32.5 million in the first quarter of 2018, up from $28.7 million in the same quarter of 2017. T&D gross margin for the ES segment was 40% for the first quarter of 2018, compared to 38% for the first quarter of 2017. Gross profit for the FIS segment in the first quarter of 2018 was $3.2 million up slightly from the first quarter of 2017.  Gross margin for the FIS segment was 10% in first quarter of 2018, compared to 11% in the first quarter of 2017 on a less favorable service mix.

Selling, general and administrative (“SG&A”) expense for the first quarter of 2018 was $22.2 million, compared with $19.7 million in the same quarter last year. The increase was primarily due to higher labor and incentive compensation costs and higher consulting and professional services in the first quarter of 2018 compared to the first quarter of 2017.

Operating income for the first quarter of 2018 was $13.4 million compared to $12.2 million in the first quarter of 2017, an increase of 11%.

Net interest expense for the first quarter of 2018 was $2.8 million, down from $4.1 million in the first quarter of 2017. The decrease was the result of a lower interest rate on our new credit facility in the first quarter of 2018 compared to the first quarter of 2017.

Other income for the first quarter of 2018 was $2.1 million compared to $137,000 in the first quarter of 2017.  The increase was due to a $2.0 million gain ($0.07 per diluted share) in the first quarter of 2018 on the issuance of a property easement on a portion of unutilized Company-owned land at one of our operating facilities.

The Company’s consolidated effective income tax rate for the first quarter of 2018 was 27.6%, down from 37.3% for the first quarter of 2017. The decrease was primarily due to tax reform passed in the fourth quarter of 2017, which reduced the U.S. corporate tax rate from 35% to 21%. 

Net income for the first quarter of 2018 was $9.2 million, or $0.42 per diluted share, compared to net income of $5.2 million, or $0.24 per diluted share, in the first quarter of 2017. Tax reform favorably impacted net income by approximately $0.04 per diluted share compared to the first quarter of 2017.  Adjusted earnings per share, which excludes the gain on the issuance of a property easement, foreign currency translation gains and losses, and business development expenses, was $0.36 per diluted share in the first quarter of 2018, compared to $0.23 per diluted share in the first quarter of 2017.

Adjusted EBITDA for the first quarter of 2018 was $24.5 million, up 4% from $23.5 million in the same period last year.

Reconciliations of earnings per diluted share to adjusted earnings per diluted share and net income to adjusted EBITDA are attached as Exhibit A to this release.

2018 OUTLOOK

“Overall, business conditions continue to steadily improve, consistent with our expectations coming into the year,” added Feeler. “Our underlying Base Business remains strong and we continue to bid and secure our fair share of Event Business opportunities, further supporting our view of sequentially stronger quarterly financial performance as we progress through the year.”

With results in line with expectations, the Company reaffirms its previously issued 2018 Adjusted EBITDA guidance range of $122 million to $128 million and its diluted earnings per share guidance of $2.15 to $2.34.  The Company’s earnings guidance excludes the gain on the issuance of a property easement, business development expenses and foreign currency gains and losses. 

The following table reconciles our projected net income to our adjusted EBITDA guidance range:

  For the Year Ending December 31, 2018
(in thousands) Low High
     
Net Income $  48,441  $  52,641 
Income tax expense    17,949     19,449 
Interest expense    10,400     10,400 
Other income    (2,290)    (2,290)
Depreciation and amortization of plant and equipment    29,400     29,700 
Amortization of intangible assets    9,600     9,600 
Stock-based compensation    4,200     4,200 
Accretion of closure & post-closure obligations    4,300     4,300 
Adjusted EBITDA $  122,000  $  128,000 
     

DIVIDEND

On April 2, 2018, the Company declared a quarterly dividend of $0.18 per common share for stockholders of record on April 20, 2018. The $3.9 million dividend was paid on April 27, 2018.

CONFERENCE CALL

US Ecology, Inc. will hold an investor conference call on Friday, May 4, 2018 at 10:00 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time (8:00 a.m. Mountain Daylight Time) to discuss these results and its current financial position and business outlook. Questions will be invited after management’s presentation. Interested parties can access the conference call by dialing 877-512-4138 or 412-317-5478. The conference call will also be broadcast live on our website at www.usecology.com. An audio replay will be available through May 11, 2018 by calling 877-344-7529 or 412-317-0088 and using the passcode 10119504.  The replay will also be accessible on our website at www.usecology.com.

ABOUT US ECOLOGY, INC.

US Ecology, Inc. is a leading North American provider of environmental services to commercial and government entities. The Company addresses the complex waste management needs of its customers, offering treatment, disposal and recycling of hazardous, non-hazardous and radioactive waste, as well as a wide range of complementary field and industrial services. US Ecology’s focus on safety, environmental compliance, and best-in-class customer service enables us to effectively meet the needs of our customers and to build long-lasting relationships. US Ecology has been protecting the environment since 1952 and has operations in the United States, Canada and Mexico. For more information, visit www.usecology.com.

Forward-looking statements are only predictions and are not guarantees of performance. These statements are based on management's beliefs and assumptions, which in turn are based on currently available information. Important assumptions include, among others, those regarding demand for Company services, expansion of service offerings geographically or through new or expanded service lines, the timing and cost of planned capital expenditures, competitive conditions and general economic conditions. These assumptions could prove inaccurate. Forward-looking statements also involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in any forward-looking statement. Many of these factors are beyond our ability to control or predict. Such factors include the replacement of non-recurring event clean-up projects, a loss of a major customer, our ability to permit and contract for timely construction of new or expanded disposal cells, our ability to renew our operating permits or lease agreements with regulatory bodies, loss of key personnel, compliance with and changes to applicable laws, rules, or regulations, access to insurance, surety bonds and other financial assurances, a deterioration in our labor relations or labor disputes, our ability to perform under required contracts, failure to realize anticipated benefits and operational performance from acquired operations, adverse economic or market conditions, government funding or competitive pressures, incidents or adverse weather conditions that could limit or suspend specific operations, access to cost effective transportation services, fluctuations in foreign currency markets, lawsuits, our willingness or ability to repurchase shares or pay dividends, implementation of new technologies, limitations on our available cash flow as a result of our indebtedness and our ability to effectively execute our acquisition strategy and integrate future acquisitions.

Except as required by applicable law, including the securities laws of the United States and the rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”), we are under no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. You should not place undue reliance on our forward-looking statements. Although we believe that the expectations reflected in forward-looking statements are reasonable, we cannot guarantee future results or performance. Before you invest in our common stock, you should be aware that the occurrence of the events described in the "Risk Factors" sections of our annual and quarterly reports could harm our business, prospects, operating results, and financial condition.

 
US ECOLOGY, INC.
CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF OPERATIONS
(in thousands, except per share data)
(unaudited)
     
  Three Months Ended March 31,
   2018   2017 
Revenue    
Environmental Services $  86,471  $  81,303 
Field & Industrial Services    33,588     28,931 
     
Total    120,059     110,234 
     
Gross profit    
Environmental Services    32,452     28,686 
Field & Industrial Services    3,219     3,187 
     
Total    35,671     31,873 
     
Selling, general & administrative expenses    
Environmental Services    6,376     5,731 
Field & Industrial Services    2,257     2,641 
Corporate    13,599     11,342 
     
Total    22,232     19,714 
     
     
Operating income    13,439     12,159 
     
Other income (expense):    
Interest income    24     10 
Interest expense    (2,809)    (4,130)
Foreign currency gain (loss)    (14)    88 
Other    2,123     137 
     
Total other expense    (676)    (3,895)
     
Income before income taxes    12,763     8,264 
Income tax expense    3,520     3,079 
     
Net income $  9,243  $  5,185 
     
Earnings per share:    
Basic $  0.42  $  0.24 
Diluted $  0.42  $  0.24 
     
Shares used in earnings    
per share calculation:    
Basic    21,801     21,725 
Diluted    21,957     21,845 
     
Dividends paid per share $  0.18  $  0.18 
     


US ECOLOGY, INC.
CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS
(in thousands)
(unaudited)
     
  March 31, 2018 December 31, 2017
Assets    
     
Current Assets:    
Cash and cash equivalents $  44,251  $  27,042 
Receivables, net    95,642     110,777 
Prepaid expenses and other current assets    9,943     9,138 
Income tax receivable    565     -  
Total current assets    150,401      146,957  
     
Property and equipment, net    232,352     234,432 
Restricted cash and investments    5,793     5,802 
Intangible assets, net    219,806     222,812 
Goodwill    188,883     189,373 
Other assets    3,850     2,700 
Total assets $   801,085   $   802,076  
     
Liabilities and Stockholders’ Equity    
     
Current Liabilities:    
Accounts payable $  11,380  $  14,868 
Deferred revenue    8,793     8,532 
Accrued liabilities    20,715     22,888 
Accrued salaries and benefits    11,763     14,242 
Income tax payable    3,149     2,970 
Current portion of closure and post-closure obligations    2,333     2,330 
Total current liabilities    58,133      65,830  
     
Long-term closure and post-closure obligations    74,490     73,758 
Long-term debt    277,000     277,000 
Other long-term liabilities    3,082     3,828 
Deferred income taxes, net    58,233     57,583 
Total liabilities    470,938      477,999  
     
Commitments and contingencies    
     
Stockholders’ Equity    
     
Common stock    219     218 
Additional paid-in capital    178,840     177,498 
Retained earnings    160,838     155,533 
Treasury stock    (370)    (68)
Accumulated other comprehensive loss    (9,380)    (9,104)
Total stockholders’ equity    330,147      324,077  
Total liabilities and stockholders’ equity $   801,085   $   802,076  
     


US ECOLOGY, INC. 
CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF CASH FLOWS 
(in thousands) 
(unaudited) 
      
  For the Three Months Ended
March 31,
 
   2018   2017  
Cash Flows From Operating Activities:     
Net income $  9,243  $  5,185  
Adjustments to reconcile net income to net cash provided by     
  operating activities:     
 Depreciation and amortization of property and equipment    6,605     6,633  
 Amortization of intangible assets    2,302     2,670  
 Accretion of closure and post-closure obligations    1,074     1,073  
 Unrealized foreign currency loss (gain)    654     (168) 
 Deferred income taxes    450     179  
 Share-based compensation expense    1,068     918  
 Net loss on disposition of assets    17     219  
 Amortization and write-off of debt issuance costs    202     504  
 Amortization and write-off of debt discount    -      37  
 Changes in assets and liabilities:     
  Receivables    14,947     2,991  
  Income tax receivable    (573)    2,045  
  Other assets    (792)    (417) 
  Accounts payable and accrued liabilities    (4,163)    (2,577) 
  Deferred revenue    301     2,037  
  Accrued salaries and benefits    (2,432)    (124) 
  Income tax payable    215     (61) 
  Closure and post-closure obligations    (288)    (271) 
   Net cash provided by operating activities     28,830     20,873  
      
Cash Flows From Investing Activities:     
Purchases of property and equipment     (7,558)    (7,151) 
Purchases of restricted investments    (498)    (2) 
Proceeds from sale of restricted investments    417     -   
Proceeds from sale of property and equipment    42     40  
   Net cash used in investing activities     (7,597)    (7,113) 
      
Cash Flows From Financing Activities:     
Payments on long-term debt    -      (4,726) 
Payments on short-term borrowings    -      (13,438) 
Proceeds from short term borrowings    -      11,260  
Dividends paid    (3,937)    (3,923) 
Proceeds from exercise of stock options    731     496  
Payment of equipment financing obligations    (108)    (85) 
Other    (313)    (74) 
   Net cash used in financing activities     (3,627)    (10,490) 
      
Effect of foreign exchange rate changes on cash    (488)    29  
      
Increase in Cash and cash equivalents and restricted cash    17,118     3,299  
      
Cash and cash equivalents and restricted cash at beginning of period    28,799     8,722  
      
Cash and cash equivalents and restricted cash at end of period $  45,917  $  12,021  
      

EXHIBIT A
Non-GAAP Results and Reconciliation

US Ecology reports adjusted EBITDA, Pro Forma adjusted EBITDA and adjusted earnings per diluted share results, which are non-GAAP financial measures, as a complement to results provided in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles in the United States (GAAP) and believes that such information provides analysts, stockholders, and other users information to better understand the Company’s operating performance. Because adjusted EBITDA, Pro Forma adjusted EBITDA and adjusted earnings per diluted share are not measurements determined in accordance with GAAP and are thus susceptible to varying calculations they may not be comparable to similar measures used by other companies. Items excluded from adjusted EBITDA, Pro Forma adjusted EBITDA and adjusted earnings per diluted share are significant components in understanding and assessing financial performance.

Adjusted EBITDA, Pro Forma adjusted EBITDA and adjusted earnings per diluted share should not be considered in isolation or as an alternative to, or substitute for, net income, cash flows generated by operations, investing or financing activities, or other financial statement data presented in the consolidated financial statements as indicators of financial performance or liquidity. Adjusted EBITDA, Pro Forma adjusted EBITDA and adjusted earnings per diluted share have limitations as analytical tools and should not be considered in isolation or a substitute for analyzing our results as reported under GAAP. Some of the limitations are:

  • Adjusted EBITDA does not reflect changes in, or cash requirements for, our working capital needs;
  • Adjusted EBITDA does not reflect our interest expense, or the requirements necessary to service interest or principal payments on our debt;
  • Adjusted EBITDA does not reflect our income tax expenses or the cash requirements to pay our taxes;
  • Adjusted EBITDA does not reflect our cash expenditures or future requirements for capital expenditures or contractual commitments;
  • Although depreciation and amortization charges are non-cash charges, the assets being depreciated and amortized will often have to be replaced in the future, and adjusted EBITDA does not reflect cash requirements for such replacements; and
  • Pro Forma adjusted EBITDA does not reflect our business development expenses, which may vary significantly quarter to quarter.

Adjusted EBITDA

The Company defines adjusted EBITDA as net income before interest expense, interest income, income tax expense/benefit, depreciation, amortization, stock-based compensation, accretion of closure and post-closure liabilities, foreign currency gain/loss, and other income/expense, which are not considered part of usual business operations.

Pro Forma adjusted EBITDA

The Company defines Pro Forma adjusted EBITDA as adjusted EBITDA (see definition above) plus business development expenses incurred during the period. We believe Pro Forma adjusted EBITDA is helpful in understanding our business and how it relates to our 2018 guidance which does not include business development expenses. 

The following reconciliation itemizes the differences between reported net income and adjusted EBITDA and Pro Forma adjusted EBITDA for the three months ended March 31, 2018 and 2017:

(in thousands) Three Months Ended March 31,
   2018   2017 
     
Net Income $  9,243  $  5,185 
Income tax expense    3,520     3,079 
Interest expense    2,809     4,130 
Interest income    (24)    (10)
Foreign currency (gain) loss    14     (88)
Other income    (2,123)    (137)
Depreciation and amortization of plant and equipment    6,605     6,633 
Amortization of intangible assets    2,302     2,670 
Stock-based compensation    1,068     918 
Accretion and non-cash adjustments of closure & post-closure obligations    1,074     1,073 
Adjusted EBITDA $  24,488  $  23,453 
     
     
Business development expenses    11     37 
Pro Forma adjusted EBITDA $  24,499  $  23,490 
     

Adjusted Earnings Per Diluted Share

The Company defines adjusted earnings per diluted share as net income adjusted for the after-tax impact of the gain on the issuance of a property easement, the after-tax impact of business development costs, and non-cash foreign currency translation gains or losses, divided by the number of diluted shares used in the earnings per share calculation.

The property easement gain relates to the issuance of an easement on a small portion of owned land at an operating facility which should not hinder our future use.  The foreign currency translation gains or losses excluded from the earnings per diluted share calculation are related to intercompany loans between our Canadian subsidiaries and the U.S. parent which have been established as part of our tax and treasury management strategy. These intercompany loans are payable in Canadian dollars (“CAD”) requiring us to revalue the outstanding loan balance through our consolidated income statement based on the CAD/United States currency movements from period to period. Business development costs relate to expenses incurred to evaluate businesses for potential acquisition or costs related to closing and integrating successfully acquired businesses.

We believe excluding the gain on issuance of a property easement, the after-tax impact of business development costs, and non-cash foreign currency translation gains or losses provides meaningful information to investors regarding the operational and financial performance of the Company.

The following reconciliation itemizes the differences between reported net income and earnings per diluted share to adjusted net income and adjusted earnings per diluted share for the three months ended March 31, 2018 and 2017:

(in thousands, except per share data)Three Months Ended March 31,
  2018   2017 
 Income before
income taxes
Income tax
expense
Net incomeper share Income before
income taxes
Income tax
expense
Net incomeper share
As Reported$  12,763 $  (3,520)$  9,243 $  0.42  $  8,264 $  (3,079)$  5,185 $  0.24 
          
Adjustments:         
Less:  TX land easement gain   (1,990)   549    (1,441)   (0.07)    -     -     -     -  
Plus:  Business development costs   11    (3)   8    -      37    (14)   23    -  
Non-cash foreign currency translation (gain) loss   171    (47)   124    0.01     (145)   54    (91)   (0.01)
          
As Adjusted$  10,955 $  (3,021)$  7,934 $  0.36  $  8,156 $  (3,039)$  5,117 $  0.23 
          
Shares used in earnings per diluted share calculation     21,957        21,845  
          

For Immediate Release
Contact: Alison Ziegler, Darrow Associates (201)220-2678
aziegler@darrowir.com   www.usecology.com                                             

 

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