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Vertex Resource Group Ltd. Reports First Quarter 2022 Results

Press Release

Sherwood Park, Alberta, May 11, 2022 (TSXV: VTX) – Vertex Resource Group Ltd. (“Vertex” or the “Company”) reports its financial and operational results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2022. The following should be read in conjunction with the Management Discussion and Analysis (“MD&A”) and the audited consolidated financials statements of Vertex for the year ended December 31, 2021, which are available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.

The first quarter of 2022 was a robust quarter which produced historically high first-quarter revenue. Vertex’s diversification efforts with continued expansion in the utilities, telecommunications, and government sectors have helped to grow revenue. The Company is continuing to maintain its focus on cost containment, operating efficiencies, geographic diversification, and sector diversification.

 

Key financial results for the three months and years ended March 31, 2022 and 2021 are as follows:

HIGHLIGHTS
(in thousands of Canadian Dollars)  Three months ended March 31,
2022 2021 % Change
Revenue 45,429  32,948 38%
Gross profit 10,457  8,034 30%
Adjusted EBITDA (1) 5,660  4,655 22%
Free Cash Flow (1) 4,113  3,964 4%
Adjusted EBITDA per share, basic and diluted 0.06  0.05 22%

(1) See “Non-IFRS Financial Measures”

HIGHLIGHTS FOR THE THREE MONTHS ENDED MARCH 31, 2022

  • The Company generated record Q1 revenue of $45.4 million compared to $32.9 million in Q1 2021, while gross margin increased to $10.5 million compared to $8.0 million in Q1 2021.
  • Adjusted EBITDA during the first quarter amounted to $5.7 million compared to $4.7 million in Q1 2021.
  • During the quarter, Vertex issued a $15.0M convertible debenture, with a term of 5 years, 8.0% annual interest paid monthly, at a conversion price of $0.65.
  • On April 25, 2022, the Company acquired Cordy Oilfield Services Inc.
  • Free cash flow amounted to $4.1 million compared to $4.0 million in Q1 2021 (See Non-IFRS Financial Measures – Section 7.0)

OUTLOOK

Vertex started 2022 with a first-quarter that exceeded our expectations. The Corporation’s strong first-quarter results were driven by cost control, realized synergies from our acquisition in the first quarter of 2021, and increasing commodity prices as well as a gradual return to pre-COVID activity levels across other industries. Our cross-border activity was negatively impacted in the quarter by the Canadian/United States border vaccination requirements that were put into place in late January for our cross-border drivers.

Our outlook for 2022 is that North American economies will continue to benefit from favourable commodity prices in energy, utilities, agriculture, and forestry. In addition, we have major capital projects from multiple midstream, utilities/telecommunications, municipal infrastructure, and energy transition projects in 2022 and 2023. With secured backlog reaching record levels, Vertex is well-positioned for strong earnings growth for 2022.

The current trend towards less carbon-intensive energy sources is presenting new opportunities for Vertex. Vertex is working closely with several of our Indigenous Partners and customers to advance projects that reduce atmospheric carbon emissions, enhance biodiversity, carbon sequestering, utilize or convert to wind or solar, renewable natural gas (RNG), biofuels, helium, and emerging hydrogen opportunities.

Economists believe Alberta and Saskatchewan will lead the country in growth this year and next, largely because prices for energy products and other key commodities have recovered strongly. Over the past 12 months, Alberta’s exports of crude oil are up by +86% and exports of natural gas have risen by +165%.

The Ontario Ministry of Finance projects that Ontario’s real GDP is projected to rise by 4.5% in 2022. Ontario’s economy had been held back by some of Canada’s toughest COVID-19 control measures. Backlog from halted projects, combined with new capital projects, is poised to give a strong boost to the service sector in 2022.

The rapid rebound in demand for raw materials, intermediate goods, and various logistics services has been hampered by limited global supply. Vertex will need to focus on our supply chains and rising costs and to continue to develop agile and creative strategies to address labour challenges which appear likely to persist for many years.

On April 25, 2022, Vertex completed the acquisition of Cordy Oilfield Services Inc. (TSXV: CKK) (“Cordy”). Cordy is a specialized value-additive business with quality people and equipment, providing environmental services to the drilling, midstream, commercial, utilities, and municipal sectors in Western Canada. This acquisition strengthens our environmental services business while providing additional free cashflow generation through savings from integration, elimination of duplicate corporate office costs and by increasing the utilization of the equipment fleet and personnel.

Vertex’s vision of being a world-leading environmental services company has not changed. As an environmental service business, we believe we are uniquely positioned for ESG performance. We understand that we have a responsibility to maximize our internal ESG performance and have made a corporate commitment to do so. More substantially, we understand that our opportunity to support the ESG initiatives of our customers has a significantly broader global impact. As such our ESG system design includes both an internal and a customer focus. As our ESG journey evolves so too will our measurement and reporting, holding ourselves accountable to internal and customer metrics. Ultimately, our intent is to create business resiliency by becoming a primary source of executable ESG supply chain solutions for our customers.

ABOUT VERTEX

Since 1962, Vertex has been a leading North American provider of environmental services. Headquartered in Sherwood Park, Alberta, Vertex employs a staff of approximately 950 employees and lease operators that provide services to help clients achieve their developmental and operational goals. From initial site selection, consultation, and regulatory approval, through construction, operation, and maintenance, to conclusion and environmental cleanup, Vertex provides a wide array of services to customers operating in industries such as energy, mining, utilities, private development, public infrastructure, construction, telecommunications, forestry, agriculture, and government.

Vertex principally operates in Canada with select locations in the United States.

For further information please contact:

Terry Stephenson, CEO, or Sherry Bielopotocky, CFO at 780-464-3295

NON-IFRS FINANCIAL MEASURES

This news release includes certain terms or performance measures that are not defined under International Financial Reporting Standards (“IFRS”), including “Adjusted EBITDA”. The data presented is intended to provide additional information that should not be considered in isolation or as a substitute measure of performance prepared in accordance with IFRS. The non-IFRS measures should be read in conjunction with the Company’s financial statements and accompanying notes.

“Adjusted EBITDA” is a non-financial measure which is calculated by adjusting net (loss) income for the sum of income taxes, finance costs including interest accretion on lease liabilities, depreciation of property and equipment and right of use assets, amortization of intangible assets, share-based compensation, restructuring costs and impairment. The Company uses Adjusted EBITDA as an indicator of its principal business activities operational performance prior to consideration of how its activities are financed and the impact of taxation, non-cash depreciation and amortization, restructuring costs and other non-cash expenses such as impairments required under IFRS. Adjusted EBITDA does not have a standardized meaning prescribed by IFRS and is not necessarily comparable to similar measures provided by other companies. Adjusted EBITDA is used by many analysts as an important analytical tool and management of Vertex believes it is useful for providing readers with additional clarity on Vertex’s operational performance. This measure is also considered important by the Company’s lenders in determining compliance by the Company with the financial covenants under its lending arrangements.

“Free cash flow” is a non-financial measure which is calculated by reducing adjusted EBITDA by maintenance capital expenditures net of disposal proceeds.
Reconciliations of Adjusted EBITDA and free cash flow are provided in the MD&A under the heading “7.0 Non-IFRS Financial Measures”

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