Radiant Logistics, Inc.

Q3 2023 Earnings Conference Call


spk02: This afternoon, Bond Crane Radiant Logistics founder and CEO and Radiant's Chief Financial Officer, Todd Maycumber, will provide a general business update and discuss financial results for the company's third fiscal quarter ended March 31, 2023. Following their comments, we will open the call to questions. This conference is scheduled for 30 minutes. This conference call may include forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Securities Act of 1933 and the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. The company has based these forward-looking statements on its current expectations and projections about future events. These forward-looking statements are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and assumptions about the company that may cause the company's actual results or achievements to be materially different from the results or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. While it is impossible to identify all the factors that may cause the company's actual results or achievements to differ materially from those set forth in our forward-looking statements, such factors include those that have been in the past and may be in the future identified in the company's SEC filings and other public announcements, which are available on the Radiant website at www.radiantdelivers.com. In addition, past results are not necessarily an indication of future performance. Now I'd like to pass the call over to Radiant's founder and CEO, Bon Crane. Over to you.
spk07: Thank you. Good afternoon, everyone, and thank you for joining in on today's call. Let me start by saying it's never dull in freight forwarding. The volatility that we've seen in the market as we've come through the pandemic is unprecedented. As you can see from the release, our results for the March quarter were heavily impacted by the rapid softening of the freight markets that has occurred in recent months. These quickly evolving market conditions have negatively impacted not only our results, but also the year-over-year comparison to our record results from the prior year period. While our core domestic forwarding services have been relatively durable Some of our smaller service lines, including ocean imports and intermodal and truck brokerage operations, have been particularly hard hit as a result of the dramatic fall off from the robust operating environment that we experienced last year. The confluence of shippers continuing to manage through elevated inventories, reduce imports, and a slowing economic environment is having a cascading effect across virtually every mode of transportation. where the balance of supply and demand has shifted from a tight market a year ago to one that is now oversupplied. We do believe we are at or near the bottom of the cycle and would expect markets to begin to find their way to more sustainable and normalized levels over the balance of calendar 2023. While our comparative year-over-year numbers are down significantly from the historically strong freight market created by the pandemic and associated supply chain disruptions. Our results for the quarter ended March continued to trend meaningfully ahead of our historical financial results from the pre-pandemic era. I view the fact that we generated over $11 million in adjusted EBITDA in our historically slowest seasonal quarter and what everyone recognizes as a very difficult market environment as a very positive indicator for Radiant and our prospects as we come through this cycle. It is worth noting that we are in the strongest financial position in the history of the company, and having generated over $76 million in cash from operations through the nine months ended March 31, we remain virtually debt-free. and continue to make good progress with our stock buyback, having acquired $5 million of stock through the nine months ended March 31, and another $4.2 million of our stock between March 31 and May 5. Our disciplined approach to capital allocation and low leverage continues to serve us well, and we believe we are well positioned to navigate through this slower period as shippers work through their remaining excess inventories and we find our way back to more normalized market conditions. Looking ahead, we also expect to continue our balanced approach to capital allocation through a combination of agent-station conversions, synergistic tuck-in acquisitions, and stock buybacks. Through this approach, along with our organic growth initiatives, we will continue to scale our business, leveraging our best-in-class technology and extensive global network. which we believe over time will continue to deliver meaningful value for our shareholders, operating partners, and the end customers that we serve. With that, I'll turn it over to Todd Maycumber, our CFO, to walk us through our detailed financial results, and then we'll open it up for Q&A.
spk04: Thanks, Vaughn, and good afternoon, everyone. Today, we will be discussing our financial results, including adjusted net income and adjusted EBITDA for the three and nine months ended March 31, 2023. For the three months ended March 31st, 2023, we reported net income attributable to Radiant Logistics of $4,183,000 on $244.2 million of revenues or nine cents per basic and eight cents per fully diluted share for the three months ended March 31. For the three months ended March 31, 2022, we reported net income attributable to Radiant Logistics of $13,567,000 on 441.3 million of revenues, or 27 cents per basic and fully diluted share. This represents a decrease of approximately $9,384,000 of net income over the comparable prior year period, or 69.2%. For adjusted net income, we reported $8,222,000 for the three months ended March 31, 2023 compared to adjusted net income of $16,056,000 for the three months ended March 31, 2022. This represents a decrease of approximately $7,834,000 or approximately 48.8%. For adjusted EBITDA, we reported $11,560,000 for the three months ended March 31, 2023 compared to adjusted EBITDA of $22,000,000 $573,000 for the three months ended March 31, 2022. This represents a decrease of approximately $11,013,000, or approximately 40.8%. Moving along to the nine-month results, for the nine months ended March 31, 2023, we reported net income attributable to Radiant Logistics of $17,452,000 on $853.3 million of revenues, or $0.36 per basic and $0.35 per fully diluted share. For the three months ended March 31, 2022, we reported net income attributable to Radiant Logistics of $27,715,000 on $1.08 billion of revenues or $0.55 per basic and fully diluted share. This represents a decrease of approximately $10,263,000 over the comparable prior year period or 37%. For adjusted net income, we reported $32,845,000 for the nine months ended March 31, 2023, compared to adjusted net income of $39,057,000 the nine months ended March 31, 2022. This represents a decrease of approximately $6,212,000 or approximately 15.9%. For adjusted EBITDA, we reported $46,434,000 for the nine months ended March 31, 2023, compared to adjusted EBITDA of $54,534,000 for the nine months ended March 31, 2022. This represents a decrease of approximately $8,100,000, or approximately 14.9%. With that, I will turn the call back over to our moderator to facilitate any Q&A from our callers.
spk02: Thank you very much. At this time, we're going to open the floor up for questions. If you would like to ask a question, please press star 1 on your phone keypad. A confirmation tone will indicate your line is in the queue. You may press star 2 if you would like to remove your question from the queue. For participants using any speaker equipment, it may be necessary to pick up your handset before you press the star keys. Please hold for a moment whilst we poll for any question. Thank you. Your first question is coming from Jacob Steven from Lake Street Capital. Jacob, your line is live.
spk05: Hey, Jacob. I'm from Mark today. Thanks for taking my question. So maybe I just want to kind of hone in on kind of your visibility into this path to normalization. You know, how much visibility do you guys have and maybe what does that look like as we enter into your fiscal year 24?
spk07: I'm sorry, Jacob. One more time, as we look into what? I'm not sure I caught your question.
spk05: Yeah, sorry. Just as we look into your next fiscal year here, crossing into June and the September quarters, what does that path to normalization kind of look like?
spk07: You know, I think as we kind of alluded to on our last call, you know, the pendulum swings, right? So obviously we had a, you know, a particularly robust fiscal year in this prior year doing over 80 million in EBITDA. And I think the pendulum has swung back kind of the other way disproportionately as, you know, as we work through inventories and this long economy and all those things that we're all relatively familiar with at this point. So to kind of, again, get to the thrust of your question and kind of how we, frame this on the last call is, you know, we're all trying to kind of figure out what the new normal looks like and kind of what that means for us and, you know, and the economy more broadly. But we think of the kind of the normalized run rate of our business to be in the 50 to $60 million range. As we come to this, kind of our own view of normal would be at a $50 to $60 million run rate. Okay.
spk05: That's helpful. Thank you. Maybe just kind of looking at the M&A environment overall. Have you guys seen your pipeline fill up with potential M&A targets, or are you guys kind of taking a wait-and-see approach? as you kind of just discussed, as you find out kind of what the new normal is?
spk07: Well, we're always actively looking at just trying to find deals that make sense. And, you know, in a lot of respects, our kind of view of the opportunity set hasn't changed. You know, we think that there's, you know, a, you know, what we sometimes describe as a built-in pipeline of potential tuck-in acquisitions as we support our existing agency stations and their exit strategies when and if they're ready. We call those agent station conversions. So there's no integration risk. They're already on our system. For those that have been around our story for a while, appreciate the idea of the aging of our agent station owners and then ultimately approaching a point in their own lives and sets of priorities where they seek their exit strategies. We're here to support them when they do that. No one's getting any younger. We think the rate at which those things will occur over time will continue to accelerate. That will manifest itself in terms of as in the form of margin expansion expressed as EBITDA as a function of gross margin. So that's kind of one thematic. At the same time, we continue to look for other standalone tuck-in type acquisitions that would be synergistic to us. Those could be in our core forwarding business, that could be in our brokerage intermodal business, or it could be supported by our Canadian platform. We have three platforms from which to support acquisitions. And then ultimately, buybacks. Our stock continues trades at what we view to be kind of below fair value rates. And so as we think about capital allocation, you know, we'll continue to look at, you know, the acquisition opportunity set, you know, relative to just taking our money and buying back our own stock at this point. I'm not aware of, you know, any other plus or minus $60 million EBITDA run rates non-asset-based 3PLs that you can buy at plus or minus a six times multiple with no integration risk. So, you know, we view it as a very attractive use and in many cases highest and best use of our capital. That's why you've seen us kind of accelerate the rate at which we're doing that, about $5 million a quarter is what we've done most recently. And I think people should expect kind of more of that as we go while we continue to look for acquisitions. So, again, as we've described before, kind of the baseline scenario is taking, you know, half of our free cash flow and using it for stock buybacks and the other half of our free cash flow to support our acquisition strategy. And, of course, it won't be that precisely on an individual quarter basis, but in the aggregate, that's kind of the underlying thematic. on how we're approaching the market. And then, you know, if we see something, you know, larger or more interesting that would cause us to deviate from that, obviously we'll look at it, but that's kind of our baseline scenario that we're going to, the lens through which we're looking to do everything.
spk05: Okay. Yeah, it's certainly nice to see you guys active on the buyback, but thanks for the color. I'll hop back in the queue.
spk02: Thank you very much. Your next question is coming from Elliot Laper of TD Cowen. Elliot, your line is live.
spk01: Great. Thank you. I want to start on freight forwarding. I know you touched on it briefly in the prepared remarks, but if you could talk about a little bit between the difference in the domestic and international businesses in the quarter.
spk07: Yeah, sure. So a couple of different aspects of that. So And to kind of re-emphasize it, our core business, kind of the heart and soul of our business is domestic forwarding, time-definite expedited forwarding across North America. And as we look at kind of the relative service line or look at our various service lines and their relative performance, our core business has actually proven to be the most durable, at least at this point, through the cycle. But as we come back to forwarding more broadly, then we're looking at domestic forwarding, which we just described as our core business, as well as international forwarding, which we do, you know, several hundred million dollars worth of that business. But that is the business that has been more sensitive to this economic cycle and ocean in particular on a comparative basis. And, you know, I'm going to divert here just for a second. You know, historically, Ocean was the smallest service line within our business if you looked at kind of relative contribution. It was really only through the pandemic and COVID and all the supply chain disruptions and everything that happened at the ports and all of the challenges that came out of that is where we had this pop, for lack of a better term, that took place in and around Ocean Services over an 18-month period. So, you know, we had a, you know, a nice, you know, opportunity set within what was going in the market that we were able to participate in significantly. And so we were, you know, happy to have that opportunity and through that process generated significant cash flows, delevered the business, you know, and it really set us up in the strongest, Position the company's ever been in kind of from a balance sheet standpoint and and all of those types of parameters So are our numbers down kind of on a comparative year-over-year basis? Yes, and they're down significantly the numbers show that but if you put it in context our March numbers are meaningfully higher for this quarter ended March than than they were for the quarter ended March of 19, which was the last pre-pandemic March quarter we have to look at. So we're, you know, trending well ahead of where we were historically for the March quarter. And in this interim anomalous period, you know, we generated a significant amount of cash flow that we were able to put to good use in delevering the business and buying back our stock.
spk01: No, that's helpful. Thanks for that. I guess maybe just following up on the international side, I guess, are you seeing anything noteworthy or any color on kind of the China reopening side?
spk07: You know, I think it is, you know, we are, I guess I'll use a banking term I hear sometimes, green shoots, right? I think we're seeing some green shoots. We're optimistic, but I think we certainly have a ways to go as well. So we are, I think, cautiously optimistic. But, you know, we're certainly not going to return to the, you know, last year's, you know, levels in terms of ocean and rates and all of those types of things. But we are, you know, optimistic that it will return to a more normalized environment, you know, if not, you know, if not this calendar year, next calendar year. But I think we'll see. I think we'll be working in the right direction. It's just the rate at which we achieve that recovery.
spk00: Okay, great. Thank you. Appreciate it.
spk02: Thank you very much. Your next question is coming from Mr. Jeff Kaufman from Vertical Research Partners. Jeff, your line is live.
spk08: Thank you very much. Hey, Bon. Hey, Todd. How are you? Good.
spk04: Thank you.
spk08: Well, first of all, congratulations in a challenging operating environment. I want to ask two questions if I can. One kind of general market and one a little more financial specific for Todd. You know, Bon, I'm just kind of curious. We all talk about normalization and kind of where we're going back to and nobody's really sure. But I'm just kind of curious your view, you know, as the floodwaters are receding here and we're going back to some semblance of normality, I'm just kind of curious how the coastline looks different to you, whether it's industry specific or product specific. You know, what's different on the other side of normalization now from where we started?
spk07: Well, that'll be interesting to see. I mean, I think there's certainly a higher sensitivity to Asia sourcing strategies. There's a lot of talk and narrative around nearshoring. you know, more business and, you know, potentially in and out of Mexico. But, you know, assuming all those things are true and assuming even everybody wants to go execute those strategies, you know, it's not going to be binary. It's not going to be a flip of the switch. Even those strategies are going to take a long time to evolve. And even if people want to diversify, I don't think that means they're going to, you know, leave Asia, that seems pretty extreme. Maybe some shippers will, but on an aggregate basis, I just don't think that's reality of how things will play out. But that's certainly an area of interest, right, to kind of watch that happen or kind of see how quickly and deeply there's a return, you know, whether the action follows the narrative, right? You know, whether we're going to see more manufacturing return to the states, you know, obviously that would be a big positive for us, I think, in terms of our, you know, that would really be kind of in our sweet spot in terms of our domestic forwarding business. So I think that would, you know, all be a positive for us to the extent those types of dynamics unfolded.
spk08: Okay, and then more of a detailed question for Todd. You know, this was one of those rare quarters where earnings looked great and EBITDA looked a little light relative to what we were hoping for, and the source of it was the DNA part of it, which was a couple million dollars less than the run rate you'd had in the previous couple quarters. Could you talk a little bit about that?
spk04: Sure, sure. You know, basically it was trademark names. that we ended up writing off. We've been converting stations from their, you know, previous, you know, Clipper. It was, you know, Wheels. You know, as we bought those companies to begin with, we kept their names for a while. And as we transitioned them over to Radiant Stores, you know, and that takes a period of time, and we end up, like, relabeling the trailers and things like that, we ended up writing off the trade names associated with that, with the conversion to Radiant Stores, to the Radiant Brands.
spk08: And apologies, I'm just going through the release as we speak, but where would that write-off have shown itself?
spk04: Well, it's in the amortization. It's the amortization of the trade names.
spk08: Right, right, right.
spk04: So the DNA is left. It's the DNA line, exactly.
spk08: Okay, I got you. All right, no, those were my questions. Congratulations, guys. Thank you. Well, thank you so much.
spk02: Thank you, Jeff. And the next question is coming from Mike Vermute of Newland Capital. Mike, your line is live.
spk06: Quick question. So when we compare ourselves to 2019 versus current, how do you look at it? I guess the only way to look at it is what's your opinion of the freight market now versus 2019? 2019 wasn't a bad freight market. And You know, anecdotally, you've heard, you know, comments that this is one of the worst freight markets currently that, you know, that many can remember. So what comparable freight market would you say we're in now to get a good understanding of how we're really performing in a specific market?
spk07: Yeah, I don't know that I can get into another specific order specifically. because there's some seasonality. So I think March versus March is the right kind of framework. But I think the point that you're pulling on, Mike, is worth reemphasizing, which is, you know, if this is our seasonally worst quarter historically, and this is, everyone acknowledges, you know, a pretty rough freight market, if If within that context, we're still doing $11 million of EBITDA and are debt-free, if this is the bad, well, that's pretty good for Radiant in terms of where we are. So as the market improves and as the economy improves, obviously we see that as some opportunity to get some lift in the overall market. results as we continue to move forward. So I'm not sure if that's entirely responsive to your question, but I think that's the best way I can come at it.
spk06: Yeah, that was what I was getting up after. And then on customer wins, how's the pipeline looking right now?
spk07: You know, there's, there, there, there are puts and takes, you know, so we are certainly winning new customers and new larger customers. which is really great to see. At the same time, there are certainly customers, particularly in the ocean segment, that when things were so, when the market was so, so tight and what I'll call, you know, some of the larger service providers out there weren't servicing their accounts and shippers were kind of seeking new service providers, you know, in the firefight to cover their loads, you know, we picked up some incremental customers, but it turns out they just wanted to date and not get married. So, we dated while they were in the dating mood, but as the market has softened, some of those types of customers have kind of retrenched back with their historic trading partners. And, you know, as you're aware a lot of the asset-based, in this market environment, a lot of the asset-intensive companies have excess capacity, right? So they're kind of price takers right now and is what's keeping the pricing pressed down in this environment. So until we can get a little better supply-demand balance between volumes and capacity, you know, we're going to bounce along here. But, you know, inevitably, these things, you know, right themselves over a relatively short period of time, and that's what we would expect here.
spk06: Great. And then last question. Do you feel like you get the sense that pricing is bottoming out here, give or take?
spk07: I do. I do.
spk06: Great. Well, look, relatively, it's a great quarter and great balance sheet. So looking forward to in the next few quarters.
spk07: All right. Thanks, Mike.
spk02: Thank you very much. Your next question is coming from Brendan Austin of Venator. Brendan, your line is live.
spk03: Hey, guys. Relatively new shareholder. We haven't spoken before, or we haven't spoken for several years. Can I just clarify a few things here just sort of on the – on the balance sheet, the double negative here, negative net debt of 17 million. That means like positive net cash of 17 million, right?
spk07: Correct.
spk03: Yeah. Yeah.
spk07: So at least for us, net debt means debt, less cash. So we had more cash than debt.
spk03: Well, that's how I read the balance sheet. I just wanted to make sure I wasn't missing anything. Um, and just again, sorry, sorry to do this, just, uh, focusing on, on clarifying some of your comments there. I mean, we're talking about, uh, a seasonal trough quarter in what you seem to be saying and I seem to be hearing from other people is a trough macro. To the extent that you guys were able to do $11.5 million EBITDA and $0.17 share of In adjusted net income, is it fair to say that in some future 12-month period not very far out that you guys would be comfortable annualizing that, or is there, you know, a little more, you know, macro managing to do?
spk07: Well, I would say in a normalized environment, we would be annualizing at something north of that.
spk03: Okay. Okay. No, I mean, look, it's great. I'm looking at 60 cents in earnings and 47 million, and you're saying normalize 50 to 60 in a normal environment. I think a normal environment might look a lot better than this. And just on the acquisition side, I'm not sure if we covered it here, but But what's the receptivity of your targets? Like, do they have unrealistic multiples? Are they saying, geez, you know, we made a mint in the last couple of years. I'm ready to call it a day. I know people are getting older, but are people just like after how relatively easy it was for two, three years, are they sort of just don't feel like fighting the fight?
spk07: Well, I think I have to go back to my pendulum analogy, right? Yeah. It was, you know, more difficult to, at least for us, it was more difficult to transact, you know, in the last 12 to 18 months because everybody had peak earnings and you're leery on transacting on peak earnings knowing there's going to be some correction out there. So building consensus, you know, between buyer and sellers with what a fair kind of run rate earnings power is you know, was kind of centered to any of those types of conversations. And, you know, here we are back to our pendulum again. Well, similarly, you know, these near-term, you know, quarterly results for businesses, you know, likely aren't representative of normal, you know, outside of our own world just because of the dynamic and what's going on. So it's not necessarily the These haven't necessarily been the easiest markets to transact in. With that said, I would say I'm really happy with the disciplined approach we have had, and we didn't go do a lot of acquisitions of high multiples and really leverage up our balance sheet, because we would likely be having a significantly different conversation on this call had we done that. And so... you know, at the end of the day, you know, our, you know, sometimes the rate at which we're doing acquisitions may not be sexy, but it's cautious and thoughtful. And sitting here today, I'm really glad that we've taken the slow and steady wins the race approach.
spk03: Sub 10 times earnings and six and a half times even I think we can be patient yes don't need to push anything to make money here hopefully yeah well I mean to your point you know buying back our stock is just a great option I already bought your stock so everyone on this call bought your stock so we all agree well it's never too late to buy more yeah there you go there you go thanks a lot guys all right thank you thanks
spk02: Thank you, everybody, and that appears to be the end of our Q&A session. I will now hand back over to Bon for any closing remarks.
spk07: Thank you. Let me close by saying that we remain optimistic about our prospects and opportunities to continue to leverage our best-in-class technology, robust North American footprint, extensive global network of service partners to continue to build on the great platform we've created here at Radian. At the same time, we intend to thoughtfully relever our balance sheet and through a combination of agent-station conversions, synergistic tuck-in acquisitions, and stock buybacks, continue to create shareholder value. With that, I'll offer my thanks and thank you for your continued support of Radiant Logistics.
spk02: Thank you, everybody. This does conclude today's conference call. You may disconnect your lines at this time and have a wonderful day. Thank you for your

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