2014

Grand Canyon Education, Inc. Reports Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2008 Results

Grand Canyon Education's Annual Net Revenue up 62 Percent; Enrollment up 67 Percent; Operating Income up 195 Percent

PHOENIX, Feb. 19 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Grand Canyon Education, Inc. (Nasdaq: LOPE), a regionally accredited provider of online and campus-based post-secondary education services, today announced financial results for the three months and year ended December 31, 2008.

"We achieved higher than expected net revenue, enrollment and operating income growth, coupled with the completion of our initial public offering, and continuing operational strides we have made with respect to our student services, allows us to continue to provide what we believe is an excellent education environment," said Brian Mueller, Chief Executive Officer of Grand Canyon Education, Inc.

For the three months ended December 31, 2008:

  • Net revenues increased 67.5% to $51.7 million for the fourth quarter of 2008, compared to $30.8 million for the fourth quarter of 2007.
  • At December 31, 2008 our enrollment was 24,636, an increase of 67.0% from our enrollment of 14,754 at December 31, 2007.
  • Operating income for the fourth quarter of 2008 was $3.8 million, compared to $2.1 million for the same period in 2007. The operating margin for the fourth quarter 2008 was 7.4%, compared to 6.9% for the same period in 2007.
  • Adjusted EBITDA increased 152.3% to $11.1 million for the fourth quarter of 2008, compared to $4.4 million for the same period in 2007.
  • The tax rate in the fourth quarter of 2008 was 30.9% compared to 40.0% in the fourth quarter of 2007.
  • Net income increased 119.8% to $2.2 million for the fourth quarter of 2008, compared to $1.0 million for the same period in 2007.
  • Diluted net income per share was $0.06 for the fourth quarter of 2008, compared to $0.03 for the same period in 2007.

"Our growth in net revenue, enrollment and operating margin continues to demonstrate the strength in our business model and the ability to grow in the future," said Daniel Bachus, the Company's Chief Financial Officer. "At the same time, we made significant strides as a newly public company, established many of the corporate governance structures required for a public company, focused on implementing improved controls for compliance with Sarbanes-Oxley and staying ahead of the educational needs of our students. Our tax rate in the fourth quarter of 2008 was significantly below our tax rate in the first three quarters of 2008 as we chose to make a $750,000 contribution to Arizona high school tuition organizations which resulted in a dollar-for dollar tax credit to our Arizona state income taxes. The contribution is reflected as an expense in general and administrative expense and the tax credit is reflected as a reduction of income tax expense. Had these payments not been made our effective tax rate would have been 44.0% for the three months ended December 31, 2008 and 40.8% for the year ended December 31, 2008."

For the fiscal year ended December 31, 2008:

  • Net revenues increased 62.4% to $161.3 million for fiscal 2008, compared to $99.3 million for fiscal 2007.
  • Operating income for fiscal 2008 was $12.8 million, compared to $4.3 million for fiscal 2007. The operating margin for fiscal 2008 was 7.9%, compared to 4.4% for fiscal 2007.
  • Adjusted EBITDA increased 119.0% to $25.7 million for fiscal 2008, compared to $11.7 million for fiscal 2007.
  • The tax rate for fiscal 2008 was 36.6% compared to 40.0% for fiscal 2007.
  • Net income increased 338.2% to $6.7 million for fiscal 2008, compared to $1.5 million for fiscal 2007.
  • Diluted net income per share was $0.17 for fiscal 2008, compared to $0.03 for fiscal 2007.

Balance Sheet and Cash Flow

As of December 31, 2008, the Company had cash and cash equivalents of $35.2 million compared to $18.9 million in cash and cash equivalents at the end of 2007 and restricted cash, cash equivalents and investments at December 31, 2008 and 2007 of $5.6 million and $7.6 million, respectively. The Company generated $10.2 million in cash from operating activities in fiscal year 2008 compared to $7.1 million in 2007. Excluding the payment of $19.5 million that was made to the Company's former owner in April 2008 to satisfy in full all past royalties due under the royalty agreement and the elimination of the existing obligation to pay royalties for online student revenues in perpetuity, net cash provided by operating activities for the year ended December 31, 2008 would have been $22.5 million. Cash used in investing activities is primarily related to the purchase of property, plant, and equipment and leasehold improvements. Capital expenditures were $8.4 million in 2008 compared to $7.4 million in 2007. Cash provided by financing activities for the year ended December 31, 2008 was $12.3 million which was primarily driven from proceeds from our initial public offering of $128.8 million net of underwriting discounts and offering expenses, partially offset by the special distribution to shareholders of record as of November 18, 2008 of $108.7 million.

First Quarter 2009 Outlook

For the first quarter ending March 31, 2009, enrollment is expected to grow by 63% to 28,460 from 17,486 at March 31, 2008, and net revenues by 60% to $57.0 million from $35.7 million as compared to the first quarter of 2008. Diluted earnings per share is expected to be between $0.08 and $0.10 per share.

2009 Annual Outlook

For fiscal year 2009 we expect net revenues to be between $250 million and $255 million for the year ended December 31, 2009, and enrollment to be between 34,500 and 35,000 at December 31, 2009. The annual tax rate is anticipated to be approximately 40%. Diluted earnings per share is expected to be between $0.52 and $0.57 per share.

Forward-Looking Statements

This news release contains "forward-looking statements" which include information relating to future events, future financial performance, strategies expectations, competitive environment, regulation, and availability of resources. These forward-looking statements include, without limitation, statements regarding: proposed new programs; expectations that regulatory developments or other matters will not have a material adverse effect on our financial position, results of operations, or liquidity; statements concerning projections, predictions, expectations, estimates, or forecasts as to our business, financial and operational results, and future economic performance; and statements of management's goals and objectives and other similar expressions concerning matters that are not historical facts. Words such as "may," "should," "could," "would," "predicts," "potential," "continue," "expects," "anticipates," "future," "intends," "plans," "believes," "estimates" and similar expressions, as well as statements in future tense, identify forward-looking statements.

Forward-looking statements should not be read as a guarantee of future performance or results, and will not necessarily be accurate indications of the times at, or by, which such performance or results will be achieved. Forward-looking statements are based on information available at the time those statements are made or management's good faith belief as of that time with respect to future events, and are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual performance or results to differ materially from those expressed in or suggested by the forward-looking statements. Important factors that could cause such differences include, but are not limited to: our failure to comply with the extensive regulatory framework applicable to our industry, including Title IV of the Higher Education Act and the regulations thereunder, state laws and regulatory requirements, and accrediting commission requirements; the results of the ongoing investigation by the Department of Education's Office of Inspector General and the pending qui tam action regarding the manner in which we have compensated our enrollment personnel, and possible remedial actions or other liability resulting therefrom; the ability of our students to obtain federal Title IV funds, state financial aid, and private financing; risks associated with changes in applicable federal and state laws and regulations and accrediting commission standards; our ability to hire and train new, and develop and train existing, enrollment counselors; the pace of growth of our enrollment; our ability to convert prospective students to enrolled students and to retain active students; our success in updating and expanding the content of existing programs and developing new programs in a cost effective manner or on a timely basis; industry competition, including competition for qualified executives and other personnel; risks associated with the competitive environment for marketing our programs; failure on our part to keep up with advances in technology that could enhance the online experience for our students; our ability to manage future growth effectively; general adverse economic conditions or other developments that affect job prospects in our core disciplines; and other factors discussed in reports on file with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date the statements are made. You should not put undue reliance on any forward-looking statements. We assume no obligation to update forward-looking statements to reflect actual results, changes in assumptions, or changes in other factors affecting forward-looking information, except to the extent required by applicable securities laws. If we do update one or more forward-looking statements, no inference should be drawn that we will make additional updates with respect to those or other forward-looking statements.

Conference Call

Grand Canyon Education, Inc. will discuss its fourth quarter and full year 2008 results and 2009 outlook during a conference call scheduled for today, February 19, 2009 at 5:00 p.m. Eastern time (ET). To participate in the live call, investors should dial 877-815-5362 (domestic and Canada) or 706-679-7806 (international), passcode 83546259 at 4:50 p.m. (ET). The Webcast will be available on the Grand Canyon Education, Inc. Web site at www.gcu.edu.

A replay of the call will be available approximately two hours following the conclusion of the call through February 20, 2010, at 800-642-1687 (domestic) or 706-645-9291 (international), passcode 83546259. It will also be archived at www.gcu.edu in the investor relations section for 60 days.

About Grand Canyon Education, Inc.

Grand Canyon Education, Inc. is a regionally accredited provider of online postsecondary education services focused on offering graduate and undergraduate degree programs in its core disciplines of education, business, and healthcare. In addition to its online programs, it offers ground programs at its traditional campus in Phoenix, Arizona and onsite at the facilities of employers. Approximately 24,600 students were enrolled as of December 31, 2008. For more information about Grand Canyon Education, Inc., please visit http://www.gcu.edu.

* Grand Canyon Education, Inc. is regionally accredited by The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA), http://www.ncahlc.org. Grand Canyon University, 3300 W. Camelback Road, Phoenix, AZ 85017, www.gcu.edu.

                          GRAND CANYON EDUCATION, INC.
                            Statements of Operations

                                  Three Months Ended       Year Ended
                                      December 31,         December 31,
                                    2007       2008     2007         2008
                                  (In thousands, except per share amounts)
                                 Unaudited
    Net revenue                  $ 30,854   $ 51,683   $ 99,326  $ 161,309
    Costs and expenses:
    Instructional costs and
     services                      11,519     17,455     39,050     54,450
    Selling and promotional,
     including $4,293 in 2007;
     $5,895 in 2008; $1,173 and
     $1,572 for the three months
     ended December 31, 2007 and
     2008, respectively, to
     related parties               10,857     19,516     35,148     65,551
    General and administrative      5,153     10,833     17,001     26,825
    Royalty to former owner         1,197         74      3,782      1,686
    Total costs and expenses       28,726     47,878     94,981    148,512
    Operating income                2,128      3,805      4,345     12,797
    Interest expense                 (738)      (741)    (2,975)    (2,897)
    Interest income                   284        132      1,172        640
    Income before income taxes      1,674      3,196      2,542     10,540
    Income tax expense                669        987      1,016      3,855
    Net income                      1,005      2,209      1,526      6,685
    Preferred dividends               (98)      (147)      (349)      (938)
    Net income available to
     common stockholders            $ 907    $ 2,062    $ 1,177    $ 5,747
    Net income per common share:
      Basic                        $ 0.05     $ 0.07     $ 0.06     $ 0.26
      Diluted                      $ 0.03     $ 0.06     $ 0.03     $ 0.17
    Weighted average number of
     common shares outstanding:
      Basic                        19,036     31,240     18,923     22,185
      Diluted                      35,215     37,488     35,143     33,430

GRAND CANYON EDUCATION, INC.

Adjusted EBITDA

Adjusted EBITDA is defined as net income plus interest expense net of interest income, plus income tax expense, and plus depreciation and amortization (EBITDA), as adjusted for (i) royalty payments incurred pursuant to an agreement with our former owner that has been terminated as of April 15, 2008; (ii) management fees and expenses that are no longer paid; (iii) contributions to Arizona school tuition organizations in lieu of state income taxes; and (iv) share-based compensation. All of the adjustments made in our calculation of Adjusted EBITDA are adjustments to items that management does not consider to be reflective of our core operating performance. Management considers our core operating performance to be that which can be affected by our managers in any particular period through their management of the resources that affect our underlying revenue and profit generating operations during that period. Although we believe that equity-plan related compensation will be a key element of our employee relations and long-term incentives, we intend to exclude it as an expense when evaluating our core operating performance in any particular period. Accordingly, we have included share-based compensation expenses, along with management fees and expenses, royalty expenses to our former owner, and any other expenses and income that we do not consider reflective of our core operating performance, as an adjustment when calculating Adjusted EBITDA.

Our management uses Adjusted EBITDA:

  • in developing our internal budgets and strategic plan;
  • as a measurement of operating performance;
  • as a factor in evaluating the performance of our management for compensation purposes: and
  • in presentations to the members of our board of directors to enable our board to have the same measurement basis of operating performance as are used by management to compare our current operating results with corresponding prior periods and with the results of other companies in our industry.

Adjusted EBITDA is not a recognized measurement under U.S. generally accepted accounting principles, or GAAP, and when analyzing our operating performance, investors should use Adjusted EBITDA in addition to, and not as an alternative for, net income, operating income, or any other performance measure presented in accordance with GAAP, or as an alternative to cash flow from operating activities or as a measure of our liquidity.

The following table provides a reconciliation of net income to Adjusted EBITDA, which is a non-GAAP measure for the periods indicated:

                                     Three Months Ended     Year Ended
                                        December 31,       December 31,
                                      2007     2008      2007       2008
                                          (Unaudited, in thousands)
    Net income                     $ 1,005   $ 2,209   $ 1,526    $ 6,685
    Plus: interest expense net
     of interest income                454       609     1,803      2,257
    Plus: income tax expense           669       987     1,016      3,855
    Plus: depreciation and
     amortization                      981     1,419     3,300      5,095
      EBITDA                         3,109     5,224     7,645     17,892
    Plus: royalty to former owner    1,197        74     3,782      1,686
    Plus: management fees and
     expenses                          108        68       296        356
    Plus: contributions to Arizona
     school tuition organizations
     in lieu of state income taxes       -       750         -        750
    Plus: share-based compensation       -     4,991         -      4,991
    Adjusted EBITDA                $ 4,414  $ 11,107  $ 11,723   $ 25,675



                            GRAND CANYON EDUCATION, INC.
                                 Balance Sheets
                                                    As of December 31,
    ($ in thousands, except share data)           2007             2008
                ASSETS:
    Current assets
      Cash and cash equivalents                $ 18,930         $ 35,152
      Restricted cash and cash equivalents        4,280            2,197
      Accounts receivable, net of allowance for
       doubtful accounts of $12,158 and $6,356
       at December 31, 2007 and 2008              7,114            9,442
      Due from related parties                    6,001                -
      Income taxes receivable                         -            1,576
      Deferred income taxes                       4,640            2,603
      Other current assets                        1,349            2,629
    Total current assets                         42,314           53,599
    Property and equipment, net                  33,849           41,399
    Restricted cash and investments               3,298            3,403
    Prepaid royalties                               317            8,043
    Goodwill                                      2,941            2,941
    Deferred income taxes                         2,806            7,404
    Deposit with former owner                     3,000                -
    Other assets                                     43              201
    Total assets                               $ 88,568        $ 116,990

        LIABILITIES, PREFERRED STOCK AND STOCKHOLDERS' (DEFICIT) EQUITY:
    Current liabilities
      Accounts payable                          $ 3,434          $ 5,770
      Accrued liabilities                         6,893            9,674
      Income taxes payable                          241              172
      Deferred revenue and student deposits      10,369           14,262
      Royalty payable to former owner             7,428                -
      Due to related parties                      1,005            1,197
      Line of credit                              6,000                -
      Current portion of capital lease
       obligations                                1,150            1,125
      Current portion of notes payable              646              357
    Total current liabilities                    37,166           32,557
    Capital lease obligations, less current
     portion                                     28,078           29,384
    Notes payable, less current portion
     and other                                    1,762            1,459
    Total liabilities                            67,006           63,400
    Commitments and contingencies
    Series A convertible preferred stock,
     $0.01 par value:
    Authorized - 9,700 and
     0 shares at December 31, 2007 and 2008,
     Respectively
    Issued and outstanding - 5,953
     and 0 shares at December 31, 2007 and
     2008, respectively                          18,610                -
    Series B 12% convertible preferred stock,
     $0.01 par value:
    Authorized - 2,200 and 0 shares at
     December 31, 2007 and 2008, respectively
    Issued and outstanding - 0 shares at
     December 31, 2007 and 2008                       -                -
    Series C convertible preferred stock,
     $0.01 par value:
    Authorized - 3,900 and 0 shares at
     December 31, 2007 and 2008, respectively
    Issued and outstanding - 3,829 and 0 shares
     at December 31, 2007 and 2008,
     respectively                                13,338                -
    Stockholders' (deficit) equity
    Preferred stock, $0.01 par value,
     10,000,000 shares authorized; 0 shares
     issued and outstanding at December 31,
     2007 and 2008                                    -                -
    Common stock, $0.01 par value, 100,000,000
     shares authorized; 19,036,050 and
     45,465,160 shares issued and outstanding
     at December 31, 2007 and 2008, respectively    190              455
    Additional paid-in capital                    7,719           64,808
    Accumulated other comprehensive income           79               16
    Accumulated deficit                         (18,374)         (11,689)
    Total stockholders' (deficit) equity        (10,386)          53,590
    Total liabilities, preferred stock and
     stockholders' (deficit) equity            $ 88,568        $ 116,990



                       GRAND CANYON EDUCATION, INC.
                        Statements of Cash Flows
                                                 Year Ended December 31,
    ($ in thousands)                             2007             2008
    Cash flows provided by operating activities:
    Net income                                 $ 1,526          $ 6,685
    Adjustments to reconcile net income to
     net cash provided by operating
     activities:
    Share-based compensation                         -            4,991
    Excess tax benefits from share-based
     compensation                                    -              (21)
    Provision for bad debts                      6,257            8,465
    Depreciation and amortization                3,300            5,095
    Deferred income taxes                       (1,656)            (245)
    Other                                           19             (106)
    Changes in assets and liabilities:
      Accounts receivable                       (8,573)         (10,793)
      Prepaid expenses and other assets           (442)            (751)
      Due to/from related parties                 (107)             468
      Accounts payable                             253              927
      Accrued liabilities                        3,802            3,596
      Income taxes payable                      (2,294)          (1,624)
      Deferred revenue and student deposits      4,236            3,893
      Prepaid royalties to former owner              -           (5,920)
      Royalty payable to former owner            3,782           (7,428)
      Deposit with former owner                 (3,000)           3,000
    Net cash provided by operating activities    7,103           10,232
    Cash flows used in investing activities:
      Capital expenditures                      (7,406)          (8,374)
      Change in restricted cash and cash
       equivalents                              (1,454)           2,083
      Purchases of investments                       -           (2,627)
      Proceeds from sale or maturity of
       investments                                (149)           2,570
    Net cash used in investing activities       (9,009)          (6,348)
    Cash flows provided by financing activities:
      Principal payments on notes payable and
       capital lease obligations                (1,230)          (1,357)
      Repayment on line of credit                    -           (6,000)
      Proceeds from line of credit and other
       debt obligations                          6,000                -
      Repurchase of Institute Warrant                -           (6,000)
      Repayment of Institute Note Payable            -           (1,250)
      Net proceeds from issuance of preferred
       stock                                     4,684                -
      Proceeds from related party payable on
       preferred stock                               -            5,725
      Dividends on preferred stock                (153)               -
      Net proceeds from issuance of common stock     -          128,756
      Payment of special distribution                -         (108,675)
      Proceeds from exercise of warrant              -             526
      Net proceeds from exercise of stock options    -             592
      Excess tax benefits from share-based
       compensation                                  -              21
    Net cash provided by financing activities    9,301          12,338
    Net increase in cash and cash equivalents    7,395          16,222
    Cash and cash equivalents, beginning
     of year                                    11,535          18,930
    Cash and cash equivalents, end of year    $ 18,930        $ 35,152
    Supplemental disclosure of cash flow
     information
      Cash paid during the year for interest   $ 2,645         $ 3,709
      Cash paid during the year for income
       taxes                                   $ 4,964         $ 5,274
    Supplemental disclosure of non-cash
     investing and financing activities
      Purchase of equipment through capital
       lease obligations                         $ 676         $ 2,481
      Purchases of property and equipment
       included in accounts payable                $ -         $ 1,292
      Issuance of Series B and Series C
       convertible preferred stock for notes
       receivable                              $ 5,725             $ -
      Issuance of Series C convertible
       preferred stock for settlement of
       balances owed                             $ 120             $ -
      Accretion of dividends on Series C
       convertible preferred stock                $ 29           $ 938
      Value assigned to Blanchard shares         $ 116         $ 2,996
      Assumption of future obligations under
       gift annuities                              $ -           $ 887
      Deferred tax on repurchase of Institute
       Warrant                                     $ -         $ 2,316
      Conversion of Series A and Series C
       convertible preferred stock                 $ -        $ 32,886

    The following is a summary of our student enrollment at December 31,
    2008 and December 31, 2007 (which included less than 150 students
    pursuing non-degree certificates) by degree type and by instructional
    delivery method:

                            December 31, 2008          December 31, 2007
                       # of Students  % of Total  # of Students %  of Total
    Master's(1)          13,031          52.9%        9,156         62.1%
    Bachelor's           11,605          47.1%        5,598         37.9%
    Total                24,636         100.0%       14,754        100.0%

                            December 31, 2008           December 31, 2007
                       # of Students  % of Total  # of Students  % of Total
    Online               21,955          89.1%        12,497        84.7%
    Ground(2)             2,681          10.9%         2,257        15.3%
    Total                24,636         100.0%        14,754       100.0%


    (1) Includes 56 students pursuing doctoral degrees at December 31,
        2008.
    (2) Includes our traditional ground students, as well as our
        professional studies students.

SOURCE Grand Canyon Education, Inc.



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