Huron Consulting Group to Acquire Vonlay, LLC Apr 24, 2014 07:55AM

Acquisition Will Expand Huron Healthcare’s Information Technology Consulting Services to Hospitals, Health Systems and Physician Groups

CHICAGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Huron Consulting Group Inc. (NASDAQ: HURN), a leading provider of business consulting services, today announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire the assets of Vonlay, LLC, a healthcare technology consulting firm, specializing in clinical information systems and electronic health records (EHR) implementations and optimizations.

Vonlay’s expertise in healthcare information technology (HIT), particularly Epic Systems software, expands Huron Healthcare’s capabilities empowering hospitals, health systems, and academic medical centers to improve their operations and care delivery.

“The addition of Vonlay introduces a new set of capabilities for Huron Healthcare to deliver value to hospital, health system and physician group clients,” said James H. Roth, chief executive officer and president, Huron Consulting Group. “Vonlay’s services will enhance our performance improvement and clinical transformation solutions, and will enable our clients to better realize a return on the significant investment that many of them have made in automating electronic health records.”

Vonlay offers a robust suite of HIT optimization, implementation, maintenance and staff augmentation services, including helping clients execute, upgrade, and maintain EHRs, build patient portals, convert to ICD-10, meet “meaningful use” requirements, and aggregate and analyze data.

“Huron understands that providers have significant and ongoing needs for information systems to produce high quality data accessed in real time, to provide new ways to engage patients, to enhance quality and safety, and to increase efficiency,” said Aaron Carlock, managing partner, Vonlay. “We are excited to join such an outstanding organization, with a proven track record for improving operations and transforming care.”

“Information technology is the backbone of more efficient and effective healthcare, and Vonlay is a leader in helping hospitals, health systems and physician groups make the best use of those investments,” said Gordon Mountford, executive vice president, Huron Healthcare. “The addition of Vonlay will enable Huron Healthcare to continue to bring new expertise and solutions to our clients as they transition to accountable care.”

The acquisition will result in approximately 130 Vonlay professionals joining the Huron Healthcare team. Aaron Carlock, Mike Kolpien and Farhan Ahmad will join Huron as managing directors. Vonlay, headquartered in Madison, Wis., was recently named one of Madison Magazine’s “Best Places to Work in Technology.”

The acquisition, which is subject to certain customary closing conditions, is anticipated to close in May. Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed. For reporting purposes, Vonlay will be included in the Huron Healthcare segment, which accounts for more than 50% of Huron’s overall revenue.

About Huron Healthcare

Huron Healthcare is the premier provider of performance improvement and clinical transformation solutions for hospitals and health systems. By partnering with clients, Huron delivers solutions that improve quality, increase revenue, reduce expenses, and enhance physician, patient, and employee satisfaction across the healthcare enterprise. Clients include leading national and regional integrated healthcare systems, academic medical centers, community hospitals and physician practices. Modern Healthcare ranked Huron Healthcare third on its 2013 list of the largest healthcare management consulting firms. Learn more at or follow us on Twitter: @Huron.

About Huron Consulting Group

Huron Consulting Group helps clients in diverse industries improve performance, transform the enterprise, reduce costs, leverage technology, process and review large amounts of complex data, address regulatory changes, recover from distress and stimulate growth. Our professionals employ their expertise in finance, operations, strategy and technology to provide our clients with specialized analyses and customized advice and solutions that are tailored to address each client's particular challenges and opportunities to deliver sustainable and measurable results. The Company provides consulting services to a wide variety of both financially sound and distressed organizations, including healthcare organizations, leading academic institutions, Fortune 500 companies, governmental entities and law firms. Huron has worked with more than 425 health systems, hospitals, and academic medical centers; more than 400 corporate general counsel; and more than 350 universities and research institutions. Learn more at

Statements in this press release that are not historical in nature, including those concerning the Company’s current expectations about its future requirements and needs, are “forward-looking” statements as defined in Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the “Exchange Act”) and the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements are identified by words such as “may,” “should,” “expects,” “provides,” “anticipates,” “assumes,” “can,” “will,” “meets,” “could,” “likely,” “intends,” “might,” “predicts,” “seeks,” “would,” “believes,” “estimates,” “plans” or “continues.” These forward-looking statements reflect our current expectations about our future requirements and needs, results, levels of activity, performance, or achievements, including, without limitation, current expectations with respect to, among other factors, utilization rates, billing rates, and the number of revenue-generating professionals; that we are able to expand our service offerings; that we successfully integrate the businesses we acquire; and that existing market conditions continue to trend upward. These statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors, including, among others, those described under “Item 1A. Risk Factors” in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2013, that may cause actual results, levels of activity, performance or achievements to be materially different from any anticipated results, levels of activity, performance or achievements expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. We disclaim any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements as a result of new information or future events, or for any other reason.

Huron Consulting Group Inc.Media Contact:Jennifer Frost Hennagir312-880-3260jfrost-hennagir@huronconsultinggroup.comorInvestor Contact:C. Mark HusseyorEllen

Source: Huron Consulting Group Inc.

Clayton Williams Energy Announces First Quarter 2014 Financial Results and Operations Update Apr 24, 2014 07:55AM

MIDLAND, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Clayton Williams Energy, Inc. (the “Company”) (NYSE: CWEI) today reported its financial results for the first quarter 2014.


  • Oil and Gas Production of 15,474 BOE/d, up 3% (25% PF for Asset Sales)
  • Cash Flow from Operations of $79.3 million, up 79%
  • Peak 30-Day Production Rates Continue to Improve
  • New Five-Year Credit Facility In Place

Financial Results for the First Quarter of 2014

Net income attributable to Company stockholders for the first quarter of 2014 (“1Q14”) was $11.4 million, or $0.94 per share, as compared to a net loss of $41.2 million, or $3.39 per share, for the first quarter of 2013 (“1Q13”). Cash flow from operations for 1Q14 was $79.3 million as compared to $44.3 million for 1Q13.

The key factors affecting the comparability of financial results for 1Q14 versus 1Q13 were:

  • The Company sold 95% of its Andrews County Wolfberry assets in April 2013 and sold all of its interests in certain non-core Austin Chalk/Eagle Ford assets in March 2014. As a result, reported oil and gas production, revenues and operating costs for the quarter ended March 31, 2014 are not comparable to reported amounts for the quarter ended March 31, 2013. See accompanying tables for additional information about the Company’s oil and gas production related to these sold assets.
  • Oil and gas sales, excluding amortized deferred revenues, increased $12.5 million in 1Q14 versus 1Q13. Price variances accounted for a $5.8 million increase, and production variances accounted for a $6.7 million increase. Average realized oil prices were $93.60 per barrel in 1Q14 versus $91.26 per barrel in 1Q13, and average realized gas prices were $4.97 per Mcf in 1Q14 versus $3.31 per Mcf in 1Q13. Oil and gas sales in 1Q14 also include $2 million of amortized deferred revenue versus $2.3 million in 1Q13 attributable to a volumetric production payment ("VPP"). Reported production and related average realized sales prices exclude volumes associated with the VPP.
  • Before giving effect to the asset sales discussed above, oil, gas and natural gas liquids ("NGL") production per barrel of oil equivalent ("BOE") increased 3% in 1Q14 as compared to 1Q13, with oil production increasing 8% to 11,233 barrels per day, gas production decreasing 13% to 15,711 Mcf per day, and NGL production increasing 1% to 1,622 barrels per day. Oil and NGL production accounted for approximately 83% of the Company's total BOE production in 1Q14 versus 80% in 1Q13. See accompanying tables for additional information about the Company's oil and gas production.
  • After giving effect to asset sales, total production per BOE increased 25% in 1Q14 as compared to 1Q13, with oil production increasing 2,756 barrels per day, gas production decreasing 455 Mcf per day and NGL production increasing 378 barrels per day.
  • Production costs decreased 16% to $26.4 million in 1Q14 from $31.5 million in 1Q13 due primarily to a reduction in costs associated with the Andrews sale in April 2013.
  • Loss on derivatives for 1Q14 was $5 million (including a $1.1 million loss on settled contracts) versus a loss in 1Q13 of $6.5 million (including a $0.4 million loss on settled contracts). See accompanying tables for additional information about the Company's accounting for derivatives.
  • General and administrative expenses were $11.8 million in 1Q14 versus $7.6 million in 1Q13. The increase was due primarily to higher personnel and professional costs in 1Q14. Compensation expense attributable to the Company's APO Reward Plans accounted for $2.8 million of the increase in personnel costs.
  • Other operating revenues in 1Q14 include a $2.9 million gain on sale of certain of the Austin Chalk assets sold in March 2014. The gain excludes $6.8 million of sales proceeds held in escrow pending resolution of certain title requirements.

Total reported production for 1Q14 was approximately 250 BOE per day below analyst consensus estimates due primarily to the loss of projected production applicable to the sale of certain Austin Chalk/Eagle Ford assets in March 2014. In addition, drilling and completion complications on two wells, one in Reeves County and one in Burleson County, accounted for production delays of approximately 400 BOE per day.

Operations Update

Presently, the Company has 14 Wolfcamp A horizontal wells in Reeves County, Texas that have been on production for 30 or more days. The peak 30-day production rate for all 14 of these wells has averaged 756 BOE per day (78% oil; 10% NGL), with the last 10 wells averaging 889 BOE per day. The Company’s first Wolfcamp C well has been on production for less than 30 days, but early production results suggest that its peak 30-day rate may compare favorably to the Company’s Wolfcamp A average.

The Company continues to see consistent results from its horizontal Eagle Ford Shale play in the northern portion of its legacy Austin Chalk acreage block in Robertson, Burleson and Lee Counties, Texas. Presently, the Company has nine horizontal Eagle Ford wells in this area that have been on production for 30 or more days. The peak 30-day production rate for these wells has averaged 574 BOE per day (96% oil).

New Credit Facility/Liquidity

In April 2014, the Company entered into a new five-year revolving credit facility with a group of 16 banks led by JPMorgan as administrative agent. The initial borrowing base under the facility remained at $415 million. The new facility, which matures in April 2019, will require an accelerated maturity of October 1, 2018 unless the Company’s existing 7.75% Senior Notes due April 2019 are refinanced or extended in accordance with the terms of the new facility prior to October 1, 2018. Among other enhancements, the new facility provides for a 25 basis point reduction in interest rates.

At March 31, 2014, the Company had no outstanding advances under the bank credit facility, resulting in availability under the credit facility of $409.9 million, net of outstanding letters of credit. With cash on hand of $39.2 million, total liquidity at March 31, 2014 was $449.1 million.

Scheduled Conference Call

The Company will host a conference call to discuss these results and other forward-looking items today, April 24th at 10:00 a.m. CT (11:00 a.m. ET). The dial-in conference number is: 877-868-1835, passcode 31964164. The replay will be available for one week at 855-859-2056, passcode 31964164.

To access the conference call via Internet webcast, please go to the Investor Relations section of the Company's website at and click on “Live Webcast.” Following the live webcast, the call will be archived for a period of 30 days on the Company's website.

Clayton Williams Energy, Inc. is an independent energy company located in Midland, Texas.

This release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. All statements, other than statements of historical or current facts, that address activities, events, outcomes and other matters that we plan, expect, intend, assume, believe, budget, predict, forecast, project, estimate or anticipate (and other similar expressions) will, should or may occur in the future are forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are based on management's current belief, based on currently available information, as to the outcome and timing of future events. The Company cautions that its future natural gas and liquids production, revenues, cash flows, liquidity, plans for future operations, expenses, outlook for oil and natural gas prices, timing of capital expenditures and other forward-looking statements are subject to all of the risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond our control, incident to the exploration for and development, production and marketing of oil and gas.

These risks include, but are not limited to, the possibility of unsuccessful exploration and development drilling activities, our ability to replace and sustain production, commodity price volatility, domestic and worldwide economic conditions, the availability of capital on economic terms to fund our capital expenditures and acquisitions, our level of indebtedness, the impact of the current economic recession on our business operations, financial condition and ability to raise capital, declines in the value of our oil and gas properties resulting in a decrease in our borrowing base under our credit facility and impairments, the ability of financial counterparties to perform or fulfill their obligations under existing agreements, the uncertainty inherent in estimating proved oil and gas reserves and in projecting future rates of production and timing of development expenditures, drilling and other operating risks, lack of availability of goods and services, regulatory and environmental risks associated with drilling and production activities, the adverse effects of changes in applicable tax, environmental and other regulatory legislation, and other risks and uncertainties are described in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Company undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements.

(In thousands, except per share)

Three Months EndedMarch 31,

2014 2013
Oil and gas sales $ 110,586 $ 98,364
Midstream services 1,616 896
Drilling rig services 6,879 5,317
Other operating revenues   5,524     2,290  
Total revenues   124,605     106,867  


Abandonments and impairments 3,839 810
Seismic and other 1,483 2,587
Midstream services


Drilling rig services 4,856 5,068
Depreciation, depletion and amortization 36,255 39,063
Impairment of property and equipment 3,406 69,537
Accretion of asset retirement obligations 886 1,068
General and administrative 11,818 7,588
Other operating expenses   502     133  
Total costs and expenses   90,026     157,750  
Operating income (loss)   34,579     (50,883 )
Interest expense (12,521 ) (10,571 )
Loss on derivatives (5,041 ) (6,535 )
Other   840     1,949  
Total other income (expense)   (16,722 )   (15,157 )
Income (loss) before income taxes 17,857 (66,040 )
Income tax (expense) benefit   (6,465 )   24,831  
NET INCOME (LOSS) $ 11,392   $ (41,209 )
Net income (loss) per common share:
Basic $ 0.94   $ (3.39 )
Diluted $ 0.94   $ (3.39 )
Weighted average common shares outstanding:
Basic   12,166     12,165  
Diluted   12,166     12,165  
(In thousands)
    March 31,     December 31,
2014 2013
Cash and cash equivalents $ 39,213 $ 26,623
Accounts receivable:
Oil and gas sales 43,264 39,268
Joint interest and other, net 17,326 17,121
Affiliates 137 264
Inventory 38,943 39,183
Deferred income taxes 6,383 7,581
Fair value of derivatives 2,518
Prepaids and other   4,795     5,753  
  150,061     138,311  
Oil and gas properties, successful efforts method 2,413,224 2,403,277
Pipelines and other midstream facilities 56,101 54,800
Contract drilling equipment 103,927 96,270
Other   20,630     20,620  
2,593,882 2,574,967
Less accumulated depreciation, depletion and amortization   (1,409,635 )   (1,375,860 )
Property and equipment, net   1,184,247     1,199,107  
Debt issue costs, net 12,115 12,785
Investments and other   16,407     16,534  
  28,522     29,319  
$ 1,362,830   $ 1,366,737  
Accounts payable:
Trade $ 75,436 $ 75,872
Oil and gas sales 42,064 37,834
Affiliates 1,463 874
Fair value of derivatives 1,594 208
Accrued liabilities and other   35,814     21,607  
  156,371     136,395  
Long-term debt 599,653 639,638
Deferred income taxes 146,076 140,809
Asset retirement obligations 47,813 49,981
Deferred revenue from volumetric production payment 28,056 29,770
Accrued compensation under non-equity award plans 18,752 15,469
Other   934     892  
  841,284     876,559  
Preferred stock, par value $.10 per share
Common stock, par value $.10 per share 1,216 1,216
Additional paid-in capital 152,556 152,556
Retained earnings   211,403     200,011  
Total stockholders' equity   365,175     353,783  
$ 1,362,830   $ 1,366,737  
(In thousands)

Three Months EndedMarch 31,

2014     2013
Net income (loss) $ 11,392 $ (41,209 )
Adjustments to reconcile net income (loss) to cash provided by operating activities:
Depreciation, depletion and amortization 36,255 39,063
Impairment of property and equipment 3,406 69,537
Exploration costs 3,839 810
Gain on sales of assets and impairment of inventory, net (4,640 ) (362 )
Deferred income tax expense (benefit) 6,465 (24,831 )
Non-cash employee compensation 3,424 1,471
Loss on derivatives 5,041 6,535
Cash settlements of derivatives (1,137 ) (445 )
Accretion of asset retirement obligations 886 1,068
Amortization of debt issue costs and original issue discount 704 570
Amortization of deferred revenue from volumetric production payment (2,010 ) (2,274 )
Changes in operating working capital:
Accounts receivable (4,074 ) 1,102
Accounts payable 5,051 (12,386 )
Other   14,701     5,645  
Net cash provided by operating activities   79,303     44,294  
Additions to property and equipment (99,419 ) (74,461 )
Proceeds from volumetric production payment 296 440
Proceeds from sales of assets 68,979 481
Decrease in equipment inventory 3,389 3,890
Other   42     (1,792 )
Net cash used in investing activities   (26,713 )   (71,442 )
Proceeds from long-term debt 35,000
Repayments of long-term debt   (40,000 )    
Net cash provided by (used in) financing activities   (40,000 )   35,000  
Beginning of period   26,623     10,726  
End of period $ 39,213   $ 18,578  




(In thousands)


EBITDAX is presented as a supplemental non-GAAP financial measure because of its wide acceptance by financial analysts, investors, debt holders, banks, rating agencies and other financial statement users as an indication of an entity's ability to meet its debt service obligations and to internally fund its exploration and development activities.

The Company defines EBITDAX as net income (loss) before interest expense, income taxes, exploration costs, net (gain) loss on sales of assets and impairment of inventory, and all non-cash items in the Company's statements of operations, including depreciation, depletion and amortization, impairment of property and equipment, accretion of asset retirement obligations, amortization of deferred revenue from volumetric production payment, certain employee compensation and changes in fair value of derivatives. EBITDAX is not an alternative to net income (loss) or cash flow from operating activities, or any other measure of financial performance presented in conformity with GAAP.

The following table reconciles net income (loss) to EBITDAX:

Three Months EndedMarch 31,

2014 2013
Net income (loss) $ 11,392 $ (41,209 )
Interest expense 12,521 10,571
Income tax expense (benefit) 6,465 (24,831 )
Abandonments and impairments 3,839 810
Seismic and other 1,483 2,587
Net gain on sales of assets and impairment of inventory (4,640 ) (362 )
Depreciation, depletion and amortization 36,255 39,063
Impairment of property and equipment 3,406 69,537
Accretion of asset retirement obligations 886 1,068
Amortization of deferred revenue from volumetric production payment (2,010 ) (2,274 )
Non-cash employee compensation 3,424 1,471
Loss on derivatives 5,041 6,535
Cash settlements of derivatives   (1,137 )   (445 )
EBITDAX (a) $ 76,925   $ 62,521  


(a)   In April 2013, the Company sold 95% of its Andrews County Wolfberry assets. Revenue, net of direct expenses, associated with the sold properties for the three months ended March 31, 2013 were $8.7 million. In March 2014, the Company sold interests in certain non-core Austin Chalk/Eagle Ford assets. Revenue, net of direct expenses, associated with the sold properties for the three months ended March 31, 2014 were $2.5 million and $5.4 million for the three months ended March 31, 2013.

Three Months EndedMarch 31,

2014     2013
Oil and Gas Production Data:
Oil (MBbls) 1,011 938
Gas (MMcf) 1,414 1,626
Natural gas liquids (MBbls) 146 145
Total (MBOE) 1,393 1,354
Total (BOE/d) 15,474 15,044
Average Realized Prices (a) (b):
Oil ($/Bbl) $ 93.60   $ 91.26  
Gas ($/Mcf) $ 4.97   $ 3.31  
Natural gas liquids ($/Bbl) $ 39.70   $ 32.77  
Loss on Settled Derivative Contracts (b):
($ in thousands, except per unit)
Net realized loss $ (1,137 ) $ (445 )
Per unit produced ($/Bbl) $ (1.12 ) $ (0.47 )
Average Daily Production:
Oil (Bbls):
Permian Basin Area:
Delaware Basin 3,573 1,734
Other (c) 3,464 5,084
Austin Chalk (c) 2,168 2,760
Eagle Ford Shale (c) 1,651 604
Other   377     240  
Total   11,233     10,422  
Natural Gas (Mcf):
Permian Basin Area:
Delaware Basin 2,806 1,124
Other (c) 7,142 9,668
Austin Chalk (c) 2,008 2,026
Eagle Ford Shale (c) 265 72
Other   3,490     5,177  
Total   15,711     18,067  
Natural Gas Liquids (Bbls):
Permian Basin Area:
Delaware Basin 443 265
Other (c) 902 1,121
Austin Chalk (c) 221 206
Eagle Ford Shale (c) 37 12
Other   19     7  
Total   1,622     1,611  
Oil and Gas Costs ($/BOE Produced):
Production costs $


$ 23.26
Production costs (excluding production taxes) $


$ 19.68
Oil and gas depletion $ 23.93 $ 26.17


(a)   Oil and gas sales includes $2 million for the three months ended March 31, 2014, $2.3 million for the three months ended March 31, 2013 of amortized deferred revenue attributable to a volumetric production payment (“VPP”) transaction effective March 1, 2012. The calculation of average realized sales prices excludes production of 26,595 barrels of oil and 11,933 Mcf of gas for the three months ended March 31, 2014, 30,488 barrels of oil and 7,533 Mcf of gas for the three months ended March 31, 2013 associated with the VPP.
(b) Hedging gains/losses are only included in the determination of the Company's average realized prices if the underlying derivative contracts are designated as cash flow hedges under applicable accounting standards. The Company did not designate any of its 2014 or 2013 derivative contracts as cash flow hedges. This means that the Company's derivatives for 2014 and 2013 have been marked-to-market through its statement of operations as other income/expense instead of through accumulated other comprehensive income on the Company's balance sheet. This also means that all realized gains/losses on these derivatives are reported in other income/expense instead of as a component of oil and gas sales.
(c) Following is a recap of the average daily production related to interests in producing properties sold by the Company effective April 2013 (Andrews County Wolfberry) and March 2014 (non-core Austin Chalk/Eagle Ford).
    Three Months Ended

March 31,

2014     2013
Average Daily Production:
Andrews County Wolfberry:
Oil (Bbls) - 1,633
Natural gas (Mcf) - 1,811
NGL (Bbls) - 356
Total (Boe) - 2,291
Austin Chalk/Eagle Ford:
Oil (Bbls) 367 678
Natural gas (Mcf) 44 133
NGL (Bbls) 11 22
Total (Boe) 385 722





The following summarizes information concerning the Company’s net positions in open commodity derivatives applicable to periods subsequent to March 31, 2014.

Swaps: Bbls     Price
Production Period:
2nd Quarter 2014 560,600 $ 96.81
3rd Quarter 2014 530,200 $ 96.87
4th Quarter 2014 503,200 $ 96.92

Clayton Williams Energy, Inc.Patti Hollums, 432-688-3419Director of Investor Relationscwei@claytonwilliams.comwww.claytonwilliams.comorMichael L. Pollard, 432-688-3029Chief Financial Officer

Source: Clayton Williams Energy, Inc.

Landstar System Reports Record First Quarter Revenue Of $688 Million And Record First Quarter Diluted Earnings Per Share Of $0.61 Apr 24, 2014 07:50AM

JACKSONVILLE, Fla., April 24, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Landstar System, Inc. (NASDAQ: LSTR) reported record first quarter net income of $27.6 million, or $0.61 per diluted share, on record first quarter revenue of $688 million in the 2014 first quarter. Landstar reported net income from continuing operations of $25.8 million, or $0.55 per diluted share, on revenue from continuing operations of $623 million in the 2013 first quarter. Gross profit (defined as revenue less the cost of purchased transportation and commissions to agents) was $105 million in the 2014 first quarter compared to $96 million in gross profit from continuing operations in the 2013 first quarter. Operating margin, representing operating income divided by gross profit, was 42.7 percent in the 2014 first quarter.           

Truck transportation revenue hauled by independent business capacity owners ("BCOs") and truck brokerage carriers in the 2014 first quarter was $645.2 million, or 94 percent of revenue, compared to $574.7 million, or 92 percent of revenue from continuing operations, in the 2013 first quarter.  Revenue hauled by rail, air and ocean cargo carriers was $33.5 million, or 5 percent of revenue, in the 2014 first quarter compared to $39.1 million, or 6 percent of revenue from continuing operations, in the 2013 first quarter. 

Trailing twelve-month return on average shareholder's equity was 35 percent and trailing twelve-month return on invested capital, net income divided by the sum of average equity plus average debt, was 28 percent.  As of March 29, 2014, the Company had $150 million in cash and short term investments. As of March 29, 2014, there was $192 million available for borrowing under the Company's senior credit facility.  Landstar purchased approximately 637,000 shares of its common stock during the 2014 first quarter at an aggregate cost of $37.1 million. Currently, there are approximately 2,131,000 shares of the Company's common stock available for purchase under Landstar's authorized share purchase program.  In addition, Landstar announced that its Board of Directors has declared a quarterly dividend of $0.06 per share payable on May 30, 2014 to stockholders of record at the close of business on May 8, 2014.  It is currently the intention of the Board to pay dividends on a quarterly basis going forward.

"I am extremely pleased with the Company's 2014 first quarter performance," said Landstar Chairman and CEO Henry Gerkens. "2014 first quarter revenue, gross profit, operating income, net income, and diluted earnings per share were all first quarter records. Strength in demand for truck transportation services that began in the 2013 fourth quarter increased as we moved through the 2014 first quarter. Significant growth in revenue hauled via van equipment outpaced the growth in revenue hauled via unsided/platform equipment, though I believe that the growth in revenue hauled via unsided/platform equipment was slightly reduced due to the harsh weather experienced in January and February. Overall, the number of loads hauled via truck in the 2014 first quarter increased 4 percent over the 2013 first quarter while revenue per load increased 8 percent over the same period. It should also be noted that 2014 first quarter diluted earnings per share was negatively impacted compared to 2013 first quarter diluted earnings per share from continuing operations by approximately $0.03 per diluted share due to the fact that the Company's annual agent meeting was held in the 2014 first quarter compared to 2013, when it was held in the second quarter. In addition, no provision for incentive compensation was included in the 2013 first quarter, whereas, a provision for incentive compensation of approximately $0.03 per diluted share was recorded in the 2014 first quarter. Operating margin in the first quarter is typically lower than the operating margin of any other quarter. In the 2014 first quarter, operating margin on a quarter over prior year quarter comparison was negatively impacted by the timing of the agent convention and provision for incentive compensation, although in-line with the operating margin anticipated in our previously issued guidance."

Gerkens continued, "As I mentioned earlier, the underlying increase in demand that began in the 2013 fourth quarter accelerated as we moved through the 2014 first quarter.  The increase in underlying demand combined with an industry-wide reduction in truck productivity, reflecting regulatory changes and severe weather that impacted the country during the 2014 first quarter, created supply chain disruption, tightening capacity and increasing spot rates. As we move into the second quarter, I expect that normal uptick in seasonal freight patterns will continue to drive strong demand for our truck services.  Supporting this expectation, demand for the Company's truck services accelerated during the first few weeks of the April fiscal period. During this period, the rate of growth in both the number of loads hauled and revenue per load on truck transportation revenue as compared to the comparable period of the prior year has exceeded the rate of growth experienced in the 2014 first quarter compared to the 2013 first quarter. Based on current trends, I anticipate 2014 second quarter revenue to be within a range of $750 million to $800 million. I also anticipate diluted earnings per share in the 2014 second quarter to be in a range of $0.73 to $0.78."

Landstar will provide a live webcast of its quarterly earnings conference call this afternoon at 2:00 pm ET.  To access the webcast, visit the Company's website at; click on "Investor Relations" and "Webcasts," then click on "Landstar's First Quarter 2014 Earnings Release Conference Call." 

The following is a "safe harbor" statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.  Statements contained in this press release that are not based on historical facts are "forward-looking statements".  This press release contains forward-looking statements, such as statements which relate to Landstar's business objectives, plans, strategies, expectations and intentions.  Terms such as "anticipates," "believes," "estimates," "expects," "plans," "predicts," "projects," "may," "should," "will," the negative thereof and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements.  Such statements are by nature subject to uncertainties and risks, including but not limited to: an increase in the frequency or severity of accidents or other claims; unfavorable development of existing accident claims; dependence on third party insurance companies; dependence on independent commission sales agents; dependence on third-party capacity providers; decreased demand for transportation services; substantial industry competition; disruptions or failures in our computer systems; dependence on key vendors; changes in fuel taxes; status of independent contractors; regulatory and legislative changes; catastrophic loss of a Company facility; acquired businesses; intellectual property; and other operational, financial or legal risks or uncertainties detailed in Landstar's Form 10K for the 2013 fiscal year, described in Item 1A Risk Factors, and in other SEC filings from time-to-time.  These risks and uncertainties could cause actual results or events to differ materially from historical results or those anticipated.  Investors should not place undue reliance on such forward-looking statements, and Landstar undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements.

About Landstar:Landstar System, Inc. is a worldwide, asset-light provider of integrated transportation management solutions delivering safe, specialized transportation logistics services to a broad range of customers utilizing a network of agents, third-party capacity owners and employees.  All Landstar transportation services companies are certified to ISO 9001:2008 quality management system standards and RC14001:2008 environmental, health, safety and security management system standards.  Landstar System, Inc. is headquartered in Jacksonville, Florida. Its common stock trades on The NASDAQ Stock Market® under the symbol LSTR.

(Tables follow)


Landstar System, Inc. and Subsidiary

Consolidated Statements of Income

(Dollars in thousands, except per share amounts)


Thirteen Weeks Ended

March 29,

March 30,




$          688,197

$       622,880

Investment income



Costs and expenses:

Purchased transportation



Commissions to agents



Other operating costs, net of gains on asset dispositions



Insurance and claims



Selling, general and administrative



Depreciation and amortization



Total costs and expenses



Operating income



Interest and debt expense



Income from continuing operations before income taxes



Income taxes 



Income from continuing operations



Income from discontinued operations, net of income taxes



Net income

$           27,638

$         26,780

Earnings per common share:

   Income from continuing operations

$               0.61

$             0.55

   Income from discontinued operations



   Earnings per common share



Diluted earnings per share:

   Income from continuing operations

$               0.61

$             0.55

   Income from discontinued operations



   Diluted earnings per share



Average number of shares outstanding:

Earnings per common share  



Diluted earnings per share



Dividends per common share

$               0.06

$                -


Landstar System, Inc. and Subsidiary

Consolidated Balance Sheets

(Dollars in thousands, except per share amounts)


March 29,

Dec. 28,




Current assets:

Cash and cash equivalents

$      114,166

$      180,302

Short-term investments



Trade accounts receivable, less allowance

of $3,594 and $3,773



Other receivables, including advances to independent

contractors, less allowance of $4,212 and $4,253



Deferred income taxes and other current assets



Total current assets



Operating property, less accumulated depreciation

     and amortization of $160,307 and $157,985






Other assets



Total assets

$      944,122

$      970,696


Current liabilities:

Cash overdraft

$        21,179

$        27,780

Accounts payable



Current maturities of long-term debt



Insurance claims



Other current liabilities



Total current liabilities



Long-term debt, excluding current maturities



Insurance claims



Deferred income taxes and other non-current liabilities



Shareholders' equity:

Common stock, $0.01 par value, authorized 160,000,000 

shares, issued 67,121,124 and 67,017,858 shares



Additional paid-in capital



Retained earnings



Cost of 22,168,803 and 21,528,693 shares of common

stock in treasury



Accumulated other comprehensive loss



Total shareholders' equity



Total liabilities and shareholders' equity 

$      944,122

$      970,696


Landstar System, Inc. and Subsidiary

Supplemental Information


Thirteen Weeks Ended

March 29,

March 30,



Revenue generated through (in thousands):

Business Capacity Owners (1)

$     343,652

$      304,049

Truck Brokerage Carriers



Rail intermodal



Ocean and air cargo carriers



Other (2)   



$     688,197

$      622,880

Number of loads:

Business Capacity Owners (1)



Truck Brokerage Carriers



Rail intermodal



Ocean and air cargo carriers





Revenue per load:

Business Capacity Owners (1)

$         1,728

$          1,619

Truck Brokerage Carriers



Rail intermodal



Ocean and air cargo carriers



March 29,

March 30,



Truck Capacity Providers

Business Capacity Owners (1) (3)



Truck Brokerage Carriers:

     Approved and active (4)








Total available truck capacity providers




(1) Business Capacity Owners are independent contractors who provide truck capacity to the Company

          under exclusive lease arrangements.           

(2) Includes premium revenue generated by the insurance segment and warehousing revenue generated

          by the transportation logistics segment.           

(3) Trucks provided by Business Capacity Owners were 8,424 and 8,348 at March 29, 2014 and

          March 30, 2013, respectively.           

(4) Active refers to Truck Brokerage Carriers who have moved at least one load in the past 180 days.           


SOURCE Landstar System, Inc.

Kraton Enhances Polymer Offerings Apr 24, 2014 07:50AM

HOUSTON, April 24, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Kraton Performance Polymers, Inc. (NYSE: KRA), a leading global innovator and producer of Styrenic Block Copolymers (SBCs) and other engineered polymers, today announced the introduction of two new hydrogenated styrenic block copolymers (HSBCs). Kraton™ MD6951 and MD1648 present a unique balance of high elasticity, extraordinary tensile strength and exceptional lower melt viscosity, which will allow for a host of new process applications to be explored.  Both polymers are an extension of the versatile family of HSBCs - Kraton A and ERS polymers - and will enable innovators to pursue melt blown, injection molding, rotational molding, compression molding, or textile processes, while maintaining the softness, strength, and pliability of their products.

KratonMD6951 MD6951 is the newest HSBC in the Kraton A family, and has an enhanced flow capability never before seen on the market.  It has several potential applications, including soft touch over molding, which produces such products as cell phone protectors and power tool grips, protective cling films and sound dampening materials.  MD6951 maintains the reliability and hallmarks of the Kraton A family, such as softness, ease of use and compatibility.  Additionally, its increased polarity makes it compatible with thermoplastic polyurethane, polystyrene, polyphenylene oxide, among others.   MD6951 is FDA-compliant, possesses exceptional elasticity, and makes everyday products more durable, resilient and comfortable - adding value for product innovators, while expanding process application techniques.  

KratonMD1648 MD1648 is an enhanced rubber segment (ERS) styrenic block copolymer. ERS polymers are compatible with polyolefins such as polypropylene and polyethylene - plastics used in such materials as elastic non-wovens for applications such as surgical and protective apparel, diapers and industrial textiles.  Historically, SBCs had certain limitations because of high viscosity making them unsuitable for fine fiber processing. However, because MD1648 possesses high elasticity and strength together with exceptionally low viscosity, it can run on existing melt blown process equipment. This opens the door for manufacturers to create products that are more flexible, softer and can produce quieter fabric constructions.  In addition, MD1648 may be leveraged to improve polypropylene modified household goods, automotive parts, hot melt adhesives like bonding tapes, spray and aerosol adhesives, and insulating materials.

According to Lothar Freund, Vice President of Technology at Kraton, "We are excited about what these two technical advances mean for our customers and the future of the polymer industry.  MD6951 and MD1648 allow many different industries to explore new markets and uncover new process applications that were never before available.  We are proud to bridge this gap that will allow innovators across the globe to produce new and better products that will enhance our everyday lives."

About Kraton PolymersKraton Performance Polymers, Inc., through its operating subsidiary Kraton Polymers LLC and its subsidiaries, is a leading global producer of engineered polymers and styrenic block copolymers ("SBCs"), a family of products whose chemistry was pioneered by us almost fifty years ago. SBCs are highly-engineered thermoplastic elastomers, which enhance the performance of numerous products by delivering a variety of attributes, including greater flexibility, resilience, strength, durability and processability. Our polymers are used in a wide range of applications, including adhesives, coatings, consumer and personal care products, sealants and lubricants, and medical, packaging, automotive, paving, roofing and footwear products. We currently offer our products to a diverse group of more than 800 customers in over 60 countries worldwide, and are the only SBC producer with manufacturing and service capabilities on four continents. We manufacture products at five plants globally, including our flagship plant in Belpre, Ohio, as well as plants in Germany, France and Brazil, and a joint venture plant operated in Japan.

Forward Looking Statements This press release may contain "forward-looking statements," which are statements other than statements of historical fact and are often characterized by the use of words such as "believes," "expects," "estimates," "projects," "may," "will," "intends," "plans" or "anticipates," or by discussions of strategy, anticipated performance, plans or intentions. All forward-looking statements in this press release are made based on management's current expectations and estimates, which involve risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause results to differ materially from those expressed in forward-looking statements. These risks and uncertainties are more fully described in "Part I. Item 1A. Risk Factors" contained in our Annual Report on 10-K, as filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission and as subsequently updated in our Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q. We hereby make reference to all such filings for all purposes. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. We assume no obligation to update such information.

Kraton, the Kraton logo and design, Cariflex, Nexar and the "Giving Innovators their Edge" tagline are all trademarks of Kraton Polymers LLC.  © Kraton Performance Polymers, Inc. 2014.  All rights reserved.

Media Contacts:Michelle Mason, Director of Marketing, Kraton Performance Polymers, Inc.T: +1 281 504 4754| F: +1 281 504 4755| E:

Molly LeCronier or Shanta Mauney, Ward Creative CommunicationsT: +1 713 869 0707 | E: | E:

Investor Contact: Gene Shiels, Director of Investor Relations, Kraton Performance Polymers, Inc.T:  +1 281 504 4886| E:

Logo -

SOURCE Kraton Performance Polymers, Inc.

Energid's Actin Software Revolutionizes Oil and Gas Exploration Apr 24, 2014 07:50AM

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., April 24, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Energid Technologies announced today a new phase of development with Norway's Robotic Drilling Systems AS (RDS), which secured significant follow-on investment from oil industry partners last week.  Energid will continue to tailor its premier robotics software, Actin, to meet the needs of oil and gas drillers worldwide, with beta deployments anticipated next year.

RDS has embraced the world's most advanced robot control software, used by NASA and DARPA, to automate the complex task of oil and gas drilling.  The Actin software will program, monitor, and control the novel robots RDS is developing and applying to offshore drilling operations. 

Energid's software provides a level of autonomy, flexibility, and safety not before seen in the energy industry.  It will simplify the interface to the end-user, whether a rig operator (simply monitoring rig operations) or a developer (with the ability to create complex motion sequences for the robots).  Complex multi-robot tasks will be built up from smaller human-understandable tasks. 

"I never thought it would be possible to create sophisticated multi-robot hand-off procedures using a simple drag-and-drop interface, especially when dealing with the number of axes that we are, but with the Actin software that's exactly what we're doing," says Roald Valen, Control Systems Manager for RDS.

Energid empowers its customers to program and control complex robotic systems. 

"We like to say that Actin provides simple control for complex robots.  It handles the intricate internal movements so you can focus on the work," says James English, CTO of Energid.

Many of the advanced Actin features that RDS is applying to drilling are available to other industries. 

"Actin 4.0 will be released later this year and will incorporate many of the tools being used by RDS," says Neil Tardella, CEO of Energid. "We are enabling a new class of automation—it's very exciting."

About Energid Technologies

Energid Technologies develops robotic systems and products for the aerospace, agriculture, transportation, manufacturing, defense, and medical industries.  Energid's Actin™ and Selectin™ products provide advanced technology in the form of extensible software toolkits.  Energid specializes in control, simulation, sensing, and communications for complex robotic systems.

© 2014 Energid Technologies Corporation. All rights reserved. Actin and the Energid logo are trademarks of Energid Technologies Corporation. 

SOURCE Energid Technologies

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