Marten Transport Announces First Quarter Results

MONDOVI, Wisc., April 15, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Marten Transport, Ltd. (Nasdaq/GS:MRTN) today reported a 31.3% improvement in net income to $18.0 million, or 22 cents per diluted share, for the first quarter ended March 31, 2021, from $13.7 million, or 17 cents per diluted share, for the first quarter of 2020.

    
 Operating Results Comparison  
    
   Percentage Percentage Percentage 
   Increase Increase Increase 
   Three Months Year Year 
   Ended Ended Ended 
   March 31, December 31, December 31, 
   2021 vs. 2020 2020 vs. 2019 2019 vs. 2018 
            
 Operating revenue 2.0 3.7% 7.1% 
            
 Operating revenue, net of fuel surcharges 2.5% 6.8% 8.6% 
            
 Operating income 33.1% 21.9% 8.7% 
            
 Net income 31.3% 13.8% 11.0% 
   

Operating revenue improved 2.0% to $223.0 million for the first quarter of 2021 from $218.6 million for the first quarter of 2020. Excluding fuel surcharges, operating revenue improved 2.5% to $198.2 million for the 2021 quarter from $193.4 million for the 2020 quarter. Fuel surcharge revenue decreased slightly to $24.9 million for the 2021 quarter from $25.2 million for the 2020 quarter.

Operating income improved 33.1% to $24.0 million for the first quarter of 2021 from $18.0 million for the first quarter of 2020.

Operating expenses as a percentage of operating revenue improved to 89.2% for the first quarter of 2021 from 91.8% for the first quarter of 2020. Operating expenses as a percentage of operating revenue, with both amounts net of fuel surcharges, improved to 87.9% from 90.7%.

Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Randolph L. Marten said, “Our talented and determined people followed up the impact of the severe winter weather in February with an extremely strong finish to our first quarter, earning 10 cents per diluted share in the month of March. The 33.1% operating income improvement in our 2021 first quarter continues the consistent solid growth we achieved in 2020 of 21.9% and in 2019 of 8.7%, demonstrating our earnings leverage across some challenging operating environments.”

“We have been increasing and will continue to increase the compensation from our customers for our premium services within the tightening freight market, which is the result of both accelerating demand and constraining capacity driven by the intensifying national driver shortage. We expect to continue to build on our momentum in expanding the capacity we provide within our unique multifaceted business model across our diverse customer base with our continued improvements to our aggressive levels of driver compensation and benefits, safety and technology.”

“We embrace our responsibility to keep our valued drivers, maintenance personnel and employees across all functions and regions safe and healthy as they each contribute to our transporting and distributing the food, beverages and other consumer goods essential to millions of people in North America. We paid our drivers $876,000 this February for their available hours not driven due to the persistent unsafe weather conditions, compared with $46,000 in February of 2020.”

Marten Transport, with headquarters in Mondovi, Wis., is a multifaceted business offering a network of refrigerated and dry truck-based transportation capabilities across the Company’s five distinct business platforms - Truckload, Dedicated, Intermodal, Brokerage and MRTN de Mexico. Marten is one of the leading temperature-sensitive truckload carriers in the United States, specializing in transporting and distributing food, beverages and other consumer packaged goods that require a temperature-controlled or insulated environment. The Company offers service in the United States, Canada and Mexico, concentrating on expedited movements for high-volume customers. Marten’s common stock is traded on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol MRTN.

This press release contains certain statements that may be considered forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. These statements include a discussion of Marten’s prospects for future growth and by their nature involve substantial risks and uncertainties, and actual results may differ materially from those expressed in such forward-looking statements. Important factors known to the Company that could cause actual results to differ materially from those discussed in the forward-looking statements are discussed in Part I, Item 1A of the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2020. The Company undertakes no obligation to correct or update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

CONTACTS: Tim Kohl, President, and Jim Hinnendael, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, of Marten Transport, Ltd., 715-926-4216.



MARTEN TRANSPORT, LTD.
CONSOLIDATED CONDENSED BALANCE SHEETS

  March 31,  December 31, 
(In thousands, except share information) 2021  2020 
  (Unaudited)     
ASSETS        
Current assets:        
Cash and cash equivalents $88,583  $66,127 
Receivables:        
Trade, net  89,552   83,426 
Other  3,489   4,202 
Prepaid expenses and other  19,434   21,903 
Total current assets  201,058   175,658 
         
Property and equipment:        
Revenue equipment, buildings and land, office equipment and other  934,405   930,123 
Accumulated depreciation  (281,812)  (275,950)
Net property and equipment  652,593   654,173 
Other noncurrent assets  1,698   1,805 
Total assets $855,349  $831,636 
         
LIABILITIES AND STOCKHOLDERS’ EQUITY        
Current liabilities:        
Accounts payable $32,060  $25,702 
Insurance and claims accruals  41,712   39,595 
Accrued and other current liabilities  24,079   24,497 
Total current liabilities  97,851   89,794 
Deferred income taxes  122,183   121,098 
Noncurrent operating lease liabilities  337   411 
Total liabilities  220,371   211,303 
         
Stockholders’ equity:        
Preferred stock, $.01 par value per share; 2,000,000 shares authorized; no shares issued and outstanding  -   - 
Common stock, $.01 par value per share; 192,000,000 shares authorized; 82,774,936 shares at March 31, 2021, and 82,705,005 shares at December 31, 2020, issued and outstanding  828   827 
Additional paid-in capital  85,019   85,070 
Retained earnings  549,131   534,436 
Total stockholders’ equity  634,978   620,333 
Total liabilities and stockholders’ equity $855,349  $831,636 
         



MARTEN TRANSPORT, LTD.
CONSOLIDATED CONDENSED STATEMENTS OF OPERATIONS
(Unaudited)

  Three Months 
  Ended March 31, 
(In thousands, except per share information) 2021  2020 
         
Operating revenue $223,046  $218,646 
         
Operating expenses (income):        
Salaries, wages and benefits  72,998   72,761 
Purchased transportation  40,765   40,445 
Fuel and fuel taxes  28,937   28,297 
Supplies and maintenance  11,015   12,228 
Depreciation  25,687   25,427 
Operating taxes and licenses  2,712   2,639 
Insurance and claims  11,446   12,284 
Communications and utilities  2,083   1,985 
Gain on disposition of revenue equipment  (1,984)  (1,555)
Other  5,389   6,103 
         
Total operating expenses  199,048   200,614 
         
Operating income  23,998   18,032 
         
Other  (10)  (97)
         
Income before income taxes  24,008   18,129 
         
Income taxes expense  6,002   4,411 
         
Net income $18,006  $13,718 
         
Basic earnings per common share $0.22  $0.17 
         
Diluted earnings per common share $0.22  $0.17 
         
Dividends declared per common share $0.04  $0.027 
         



MARTEN TRANSPORT, LTD.
SEGMENT INFORMATION
(Unaudited)

   Dollar  Percentage 
   Change  Change 
 Three Months Three Months  Three Months 
 Ended Ended  Ended 
 March 31, March 31,  March 31, 
(Dollars in thousands) 2021  2020  2021 vs. 2020  2021 vs. 2020 
Operating revenue:                
Truckload revenue, net of fuel surcharge revenue $83,919  $83,857  $62   0.1%
Truckload fuel surcharge revenue  10,996   11,275   (279)  (2.5)
Total Truckload revenue  94,915   95,132   (217)  (0.2)
                 
Dedicated revenue, net of fuel surcharge revenue  66,902   64,159   2,743   4.3 
Dedicated fuel surcharge revenue  11,335   10,878   457   4.2 
Total Dedicated revenue  78,237   75,037   3,200   4.3 
                 
Intermodal revenue, net of fuel surcharge revenue  19,446   20,594   (1,148)  (5.6)
Intermodal fuel surcharge revenue  2,558   3,086   (528)  (17.1)
Total Intermodal revenue  22,004   23,680   (1,676)  (7.1)
                 
Brokerage revenue  27,890   24,797   3,093   12.5 
                 
Total operating revenue $223,046  $218,646  $4,400   2.0%
                 
Operating income:                
Truckload $11,415  $6,785  $4,630   68.2%
Dedicated  8,936   8,533   403   4.7 
Intermodal  1,461   1,306   155   11.9 
Brokerage  2,186   1,408   778   55.3 
Total operating income $23,998  $18,032  $5,966   33.1%
                 
Operating ratio:                
Truckload  88.0%  92.9%        
Dedicated  88.6   88.6         
Intermodal  93.4   94.5         
Brokerage  92.2   94.3         
Consolidated operating ratio  89.2%  91.8%        



MARTEN TRANSPORT, LTD.
OPERATING STATISTICS
(Unaudited)

  Three Months 
  Ended March 31, 
  2021  2020 
Truckload Segment:        
Revenue (in thousands) $94,915  $95,132 
Average revenue, net of fuel surcharges, per tractor per week(1) $4,057  $3,814 
Average tractors(1)  1,609   1,691 
Average miles per trip  534   559 
Non-revenue miles percentage(2)  10.3%  11.2%
Total miles (in thousands)  38,283   41,039 
         
Dedicated Segment:        
Revenue (in thousands) $78,237  $75,037 
Average revenue, net of fuel surcharges, per tractor per week(1) $3,214  $3,304 
Average tractors(1)  1,619   1,494 
Average miles per trip  307   306 
Non-revenue miles percentage(2)  0.8%  0.7%
Total miles (in thousands)  31,999   31,536 
         
Intermodal Segment:        
Revenue (in thousands) $22,004  $23,680 
Loads  7,982   9,737 
Average tractors  134   100 
         
Brokerage Segment:        
Revenue (in thousands) $27,890  $24,797 
Loads  14,575   16,108 
         
At March 31, 2021 and March 31, 2020:        
Total tractors(1)  3,361   3,377 
Average age of company tractors (in years)  1.6   1.8 
Total trailers  5,344   5,420 
Average age of company trailers (in years)  3.2   2.6 
Ratio of trailers to tractors(1)  1.6   1.6 


  Three Months 
  Ended March 31, 
(In thousands) 2021  2020 
         
Net cash provided by operating activities $43,570  $43,480 
Net cash used for investing activities  (17,417)  (36,632)
Net cash used for financing activities  (3,697)  (2,173)
         
Weighted average shares outstanding:        
Basic  82,758   82,214 
Diluted  83,359   82,864 


(1)  Includes tractors driven by both company-employed drivers and independent contractors. Independent contractors provided 133 and 106 tractors as of March 31, 2021 and 2020, respectively. 
  
(2) Represents the percentage of miles for which the company is not compensated.

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