Watlington Waterworks: “Very Strong Year”

May 6, 2019

In a filing with the Bermuda Stock Exchange [BSX], Watlington Waterworks Ltd. releases the Directors report to the shareholders. The full filing stated:

Watlington Waterworks Limited Board of Directors Report to Shareholders For the Year ended December 31st, 2018:

The half-year report spoke of managing expectations following on after the exceptional year experienced in 2017. The Board thought it would be unrealistic to expect a repeat year. While 2018 did not achieve the lofty heights of the previous year, the Company did have a very strong year which was second only to the exceptional 2017 year.

Revenue was marginally higher in 2018, however expenses were up by a greater amount as the Company experienced increased operating costs across the complete spectrum of its operations.

The Board has continued its long-term infrastructure strengthening strategy with investment in upgrades at the seawater reverse osmosis plant to further improve operational efficiency and controls, and in upgrading the retail sales and administrative facilities at its headquarters location. Future investment to strengthen bottled water infrastructure is planned through the current year.

The Company’s performances are very much influenced by environmental factors beyond its control, however, the Board remains confident that it should maintain it’s course of steady infrastructure improvement for it’s core activities to enable the Company to make use of the advantages provided by advances in technology to improve performance and to provide interesting and challenging professional careers to young Bermudians who are, and will be, the mainstay of the Company’s long-term success.

The Company has benefited from having a long serving very able team of Bermudians, turnover amongst staff at all levels has been low. The Board feels investment in human resources is even more important to the on-going long-term success of the company than its physical infrastructure strengthening policy. It is fully committed to the recruitment and development of its personnel. Costs attributed to salaries and benefits for employees are expected to increase in the short-term because of this policy of human resource development and succession planning.

The Company continues to carry a substantial cash/investment reserve. This remains earmarked for land and/or asset acquisition together with construction of a reservoir in the West end. A search for a site on which to build a significant reservoir to improve overall water production, storage and distribution efficiency was found and the Company has been steadily making progress as it goes through the regulatory process to receive permission to develop the site. It is anticipated that the sale will be completed this year.

The Board also remains committed to sharing the Company’s success with shareholders as the benefits of its long-term planning and continuing significant capital financial investments for public water supply are realized. As a result of the Company’s strong financial performance, Directors declared a bonus dividend of 20 cents per share based on 2018 results to all shareholders of record on March 15, 2019. The dividend was paid on March 29, 2019. This decision is consistent with the Company’s strategy of balancing dividends to shareholders with the need to preserve funds for future reinvestment in infrastructure.

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