Market Overview

National American University Holdings, Inc. Reports Fiscal 2019 First Quarter Results

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Company to host conference call on October 11, 2018, at 11:00 a.m. ET

Financial and Operational Highlights

  • Credit hour enrollment in NAU's online operation increased 34% during the FY 2019 first quarter (summer 2018 term) from the prior-year first quarter. Likewise, credit hour enrollments for the military division and Canada division increased 171% and 109%, respectively, during the FY 2019 first quarter from the prior-year first quarter.
  • Combined enrollment in graduate and doctoral programs increased 28.0% to 612 students during the FY 2019 first quarter from the prior-year first quarter and 9.3% from the FY 2018 fourth quarter.
  • Students enrolled in 45,860 credit hours in the FY 2019 first quarter, a 16.5% decrease from 54,951 credit hours during the prior-year first quarter, primarily due to a 5,536 year-over-year decrease in credit hours enrolled by teach-out students. Similarly, enrollment by total headcount decreased 15.9% from the prior-year first quarter, to 4,974 students as of August 31, 2018, as a result of a decrease in continuing education and undergraduate & diploma students. Continuing education enrollment numbers have steadily decreased in recent terms due to the discontinuation of NAU's workforce development initiative to allow greater focus on other long-term enrollment growth areas. Excluding these students who enrolled in one-off courses, enrollment decreased 14.6% year over year.
  • In September, NAU signed a transfer agreement with Indianapolis, Indiana-based Harrison College to provide primarily online degree completion opportunities for approximately 750 students. The University accepted and enrolled approximately 250 students for its October 1st start, and additional students have registered for the November 5th start.
  • FY 2019 first quarter total revenue was $16.0 million, compared to $19.8 million in the prior-year first quarter. The Company's total academic segment revenue was $15.4 million in the FY 2019 first quarter, compared to $19.2 million in the prior-year first quarter.
  • FY 2019 first quarter net loss attributable to the Company was $(5.0) million, compared to $(3.8) million in the prior-year first quarter, primarily as a result of lower revenues and $0.6 million in noncash asset impairment charges primarily related to leasehold improvements at certain consolidated locations, partially offset by a $3.0 million decrease in operating expenses as a result of the Company's cost-cutting initiatives aimed at better aligning costs with current enrollment levels and student needs.
  • The balance sheet at August 31, 2018, included cash, cash equivalents and investments of $3.2 million, restricted cash of $9.3 million, working capital deficit of $5.4 million, long-term debt of $7.2 million, and stockholders' equity of $11.8 million.

RAPID CITY, S.D., Oct. 10, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) --  National American University Holdings, Inc. (the "Company") (NASDAQ:NAUH), which through its wholly owned subsidiary operates National American University ("NAU" or the "University"), a regionally accredited, proprietary, multi-location institution of higher learning, today reported unaudited financial results for its fiscal 2019 first quarter ended August 31, 2018. 

Management Commentary

Enrollment
Ronald L. Shape, Ed.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of the Company, stated, "We were pleased to see year-over-year credit hour enrollment growth in our online operations continue into the summer 2018 term, particularly as this time of year is generally impacted by seasonality due to the timing of student vacations. NAU's Henley-Putnam School of Strategic Security is now fully operational, and we hosted the Higher Learning Commission for a post-acquisition visit in mid-September, which we believe went well. With the integration and oversight portion of the Henley-Putnam acquisition substantially completed, we have moved forward with a marketing plan to substantially grow our military division enrollments. Enrollment pressures continued to come from the on-ground division, and we continue to monitor our remaining physical locations closely. Organic growth of our online operation continues to be a major focus with our Kansas City online enrollment center, which fully launched at the end of 2017, playing a crucial role in these efforts. Our focus on stabilizing and growing enrollments is two-fold: 1) growing the online operation, which is now centralized under one leadership team directing structure and oversight of the division and 2) improving retention through faculty engagement and content engagement in the classroom. We believe both are critical to the long-term viability of our institution, as well as to our ability to help our students achieve positive academic and career outcomes."

Operating Initiatives
Dr. Shape continued, "As discussed in our year-end results, the Company continues actively exploring opportunities that will allow us to reduce our operating expenses through the consolidation of underutilized on-ground locations. Throughout this process, we have not forgotten that our students are our first priority. We believe the changes we have made to improve and expand upon the online and mobile services we offer to our students, as well as our commitment to engaging and retaining students, will result in their best possible outcomes. We have clearly defined our strategic objectives for FY 2019 and look forward to providing more students with the quality academic programming and support they have come to expect from NAU.

"We have now successfully liquidated six locations in total, two through cash buy-outs (Allen, TX and Tigard, OR) and four through lease terminations (Albuquerque East, NM; Colorado Springs North, CO; Wichita West, KS; and Watertown, SD). We are working in earnest to address the leases for several other locations that we have made the decision to consolidate and expect to see continued reductions in our operation lease obligation in the future."

Opportunities with Other Institutions
Dr. Shape concluded, "In recent months, we have been approached by a number of institutions that have found themselves in the difficult position of needing to close their doors. Last month, we signed a transfer agreement with Harrison College, which operated 11 campuses in Indiana, Ohio, and North Carolina, whereby NAU is working to provide approximately 750 students with primarily online degree completion opportunities. The University accepted and enrolled approximately 250 students for its October 1st start, and additional students have registered for the November 5th start, which will have a positive impact on our enrollments in the current fall term. Given the current industry environment, we believe there will be other instances in the future where we will be able to leverage our existing infrastructure and brand recognition to assist displaced students in pursuing and ultimately achieving their educational goals."

Operating Review

Enrollment Update

Total NAU student enrollment for the summer 2018 term was 4,974 students, compared to 5,917 during the prior summer term. Students enrolled in 45,860 credit hours, compared to 54,951 credit hours during the prior summer term. The current average age of NAU's students continues to be in the mid-30s, with those seeking undergraduate degrees remaining the highest portion of NAU's student population. 

The following is a summary of student/credit hour enrollment at August 31, 2018, and August 31, 2017, by degree level and by instructional delivery method:

    August 31, 2018
(Summer '18 Term)
  August 31, 2017
(Summer '17 Term)
    No. of
Students
  % of
Total
    No. of
Students
  % of
Total
 
Continuing Ed   7   0.1 %   103   1.7 %
Doctoral   167   3.4 %   94   1.6 %
Graduate   445   8.9 %   384   6.5 %
Undergraduate & Diploma   4,355   87.6 %   5,336   90.2 %
                     
Total   4,974   100.0 %   5,917   100.0 %
                     
    No. of
Credits
  % of
Total
    No. of
Credits
  % of
Total
 
On-Campus   4,211   9.2 %   9,323   17.0 %
Online   36,881   80.4 %   40,512   73.7 %
Hybrid   4,769   10.4 %   5,116   9.3 %
                     
Total   45,860   100.0 %   54,951   100.0 %

Financial Review

The Company, through its wholly owned subsidiary, operates in two business segments: academics, which consists of NAU's undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral education programs and contributes the primary portion of the Company's revenue; and ownership in and development of multiple apartments and condominium complexes from which it derives sales and rental income. The real estate operations generated approximately 3.9% of the Company's revenue for the fiscal quarter ended August 31, 2018.

Fiscal 2019 First Quarter Financial Results

  • Total revenue for the FY 2019 first quarter was $16.0 million, compared to $19.8 million in the prior-year first quarter. Of this amount, academic tuition revenue was $14.7 million, compared to $18.2 million in the prior-year first quarter, and auxiliary (bookstore) revenue was $0.7 million for the FY 2019 first quarter, compared to $1.0 million in the prior-year first quarter. This decrease in academic revenue was primarily a result of decreased enrollment.
  • Educational services expense for the FY 2019 first quarter decreased to $6.4 million, or 41.2% of total academic segment revenue, from $6.9 million, or 35.9%, in the prior-year first quarter. Educational services expense specifically relates to academics and includes salaries and benefits of faculty and academic administrators, costs of educational supplies, faculty reference and support material and related academic costs.
  • SG&A expenses for the FY 2019 first quarter decreased to $13.1 million, or 81.5% of total revenue, from $15.5 million, or 78.3%, in the prior-year first quarter.
  • Loss before income taxes and non-controlling interest for the FY 2019 first quarter was $(4.9) million, compared to $(4.1) million in the prior-year first quarter, as a result of decreased revenues.
  • Net loss attributable to the Company for the FY 2019 first quarter was $(5.0) million, or ($0.20) per diluted share based on 24.3 million shares outstanding, compared to net loss attributable to the Company of $(3.8) million, or ($0.16) per diluted share based on 24.2 million shares outstanding, in the prior-year first quarter.
  • Losses before interest, tax, and depreciation and amortization ("LBITDA") for the FY 2019 first quarter was $3.6 million, compared to $2.7 million in the prior-year first quarter. A table reconciling LBITDA to net loss can be found at the end of this release.
  • Adjusted LBITDA for the FY 2019 first quarter, which excludes loss on lease termination and acceleration and gain on impairment and disposition of property and equipment, was $3.0 million, compared to $2.3 million in the prior-year first quarter. A table reconciling Adjusted LBITDA to net loss can be found at the end of this release.

Balance Sheet Highlights

(in millions except for percentages)   8/31/2018     5/31/2018  
Cash and Cash Equivalents/Investments $ 3.2*   $ 5.3  
Working Capital (Deficit)   (5.4)     (0.7)  
Other Long-term Liabilities   2.4     2.7  
Stockholders' Equity   11.8     17.0  

*Decrease in cash was primarily the result of expenditures related to lease terminations and operating loss.

Conference Call Information

Management will discuss these results in a conference call (with accompanying presentation) on Thursday, October 11, 2018, at 11:00 a.m. ET.

The dial-in numbers are:
(877) 407-9078 (U.S.)
(201) 493-6745 (International)

Accompanying Slide Presentation and Webcast

The Company will have an accompanying slide presentation available in PDF format at the "Investor Relations" section of the NAU website at http://investors.national.edu. The presentation will be made av

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