Rayonier Advanced Materials Inc. (NYSE:RYAM) Q4 2017 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

Feb 20, 2018 • 10:00 am ET


Rayonier Advanced Materials Inc. (NYSE:RYAM) Q4 2017 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript


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Greetings, and welcome to the Rayonier Advanced Materials Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2017 Earnings Conference Call. At this time all participants are in a listen-only mode. A brief question-and-answer session will follow the formal presentation. (Operator Instructions). As a reminder, this conference is being recorded.

It is now my pleasure to introduce your host, Mickey Walsh, Treasurer and Vice President of Investor Relations for Rayonier Advanced Materials. Thank you, sir. You may begin.

Mickey Walsh

Thank you, and good morning, everyone. Welcome again to Rayonier Advanced Materials Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2017 Earnings Call and Webcast. Joining me on today's call are Paul Boynton, our Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer; and Frank Ruperto, our Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President of Financial Strategy.

Our earnings release and presentation materials were issued this morning and are available on our website at rayonieram.com. I'd like to remind you that in today's presentation, we will include forward-looking statements made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of federal security laws. Our earnings release as well as our filings with the SEC list some of the factors which may cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements we may make. They are also referenced on Slide 2 of our presentation material.

Today's presentation will also reference certain non-GAAP financial measures, as noted on Slide 3 of our presentation materials. We believe non-GAAP financial measures provide useful information for management and investors, but non-GAAP measures should not be considered an alternative to GAAP measures. A reconciliation of these measures to their most directly comparable GAAP financial measures are included on the Pages 26 through 28 of our presentation.

At this time, I would like to turn the call over to Paul for his opening remarks.

Paul Boynton

Thank you, Mickey, and good morning, everyone. I'm going to just start today's call with a brief overview of recent activities before turning the call over to Frank to review our financial results as well as our current outlook for the business. After that, I'll provide a more thorough update on our strategic initiatives designed to grow the company.

This morning, we reported our fourth quarter and full year 2017 financial results, which were impacted by Hurricane Irma as well as an operational disruption at one of our largest customers this past October. As a result, exclusive of the Tembec acquisition, we delivered full year 2017 adjusted EBITDA of $177 million and free cash flow of $96 million, in line with our previous guidance. Despite these challenges, we were able to achieve our goal of delivering $30 million of cost improvements for the full year as part of our cost transformation pillar.

During the quarter, we also completed the acquisition of Tembec, which is a significant milestone in the more than 90 year history of Rayonier Advanced Materials. Tembec brings a complementary portfolio of high-purity cellulose products, given their strength in ethers, which builds on our existing strength in acetates and other specialty market segments, creating a global