With no hotel or cruise ship tourists, Bahamas Waste Chairman Peter Andrews called 2020 the most difficult year ever for the waste management company.
Bahamas Waste saw gross profits slump from $4,864,064 in 2019 to $4,260,221 during the COVID-19 dominated 2020. Operating profits dropped from $1,104,224 to $733,662.
Andrews said the rollout of vaccines and the slow return of tourism allows him to feel that the company has passed through a dark valley and is returning to a bright future.
“The outlook for 2020 was extremely difficult to report and the year proved to be perhaps our most difficult year ever. With no hotel or cruise ship tourists the outlook was grim. Our goal was to trim our costs and yet keep as many of the loyal staff employed as possible. With careful guidance and excellent management we were able to accomplish an enviable profit level and continue our super service to our customers,” he said in the company’s recently filed audited financial report for 2020.
“We adhered to the strict COVID-19 regulations and consequently stayed relatively free of the disease. And now the horrible year seems to be showing signs of change. The vaccine is rolling out fairly easily, tourists are returning, construction is getting stronger and a degree of optimism is peeking around the corner. Personally, having received the first round of vaccine makes me feel safer and better. We are a small nation and will recover more quickly than our larger neighbors.”
In its interim report for the first three months of the year ending March 31, Bahamas Waste saw some improvement in comprehensive net income for the period, which stood at $623,403, up from the $431,093 during the same period in 2020.
Expenses were slashed, from $926,089 during the first quarter of 2020 to $523,537 during the first quarter of this year.
Salaries and related expenses for the entirety of 2020 were scaled back to $1.57 million from $1.70 million in 2019.
Managing Director Francisco deCardenas said the scale back in expenses was strategic to allow the company to weather the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I am pleased with the 2020 results, as we closed with a good performance despite the extremely negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the global and local economies. I must note that management had to scale back direct and administrative expenses, in particular labor costs, to yield an adequate bottom line as well as a strong cash position,” he said in the financial report.
“I am also very pleased with the board’s decision to declare a dividend in the fourth quarter in an effort to provide our shareholders with some relief during these very difficult times. Even though there was very little activity in our share buyback of only 1,000 treasury shares, our share price remained consistent during the year. This is gratifying, all things considered.”
Total shareholders’ equity as of mid-April 2021 stood at $10.79 million, up from $10.50 in 2019.