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NRP Reports Mixed Results for First Quarter

Natural Resource Partners (NRP) reported first quarter 2015 revenues of $109.7 million, resulting in net income per unit of $0.14 compared to $80.3 million in revenues and net income per unit of $0.29 reported for the first quarter 2014. Distributable cash flow was $53.3 million in the first quarter 2015 compared to $38.9 million for 2014. NRP also reported Adjusted EBITDA of $64.2 million for first quarter 2015 versus $69.0 million for first quarter 2014.

"As announced on April 22, we are in the initial stages of implementing a long-term strategic plan to reduce NRP's debt and enhance our liquidity through this difficult commodity cycle," said Wyatt Hogan, president and chief operating officer. "During the implementation of this long-term plan, we will remain focused on actively managing our assets and operations in a cost-efficient manner. As demonstrated by our first quarter 2015 results, we have diversified our sources of revenue across a more balanced portfolio of coal royalties, construction aggregates, soda ash and oil and gas, and believe that we are on the right path to achieving our long-term objective of growing NRP while improving our financial profile."

Total revenues and other income for the first quarter 2015 increased 37 percent to $109.7 million from the same period of 2014 due primarily to increased aggregates-related revenues and oil-and-gas-related revenues as a result of the VantaCore construction aggregates and Sanish Field oil-and-gas acquisitions completed in the fourth quarter of 2014. These increases were partially offset by a decrease in coal-related revenues as compared to the first quarter 2014.

The $25.6 million increase in aggregates-related revenues included a $26.8 million increase attributable to VantaCore, partially offset by a slight decline in other aggregates-related revenues. Equity in earnings of our unconsolidated investment in the soda ash business increased $2.7 million, or 28 percent, over the first quarter of 2014. In addition, oil and gas revenues increased $5.2 million to $15.2 million.

Coal-related revenues decreased 6 percent to $49.5 million, due to both decreases in coal production volumes by NRP's lessees (9 percent) and decreases in average coal royalty revenue per ton (6 percent) as compared to the first quarter 2014. The decrease in coal royalty revenues resulted primarily from a decrease in Northern Appalachian revenues, where coal reserves were exhausted at one higher revenue mine, and also lower sales volumes in the Illinois Basin. Metallurgical coal represented 33 percent of coal production and 40 percent of coal royalty revenues for the first quarter of 2015.