ATLANTA, April 29, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Southern Company today reported first-quarter 2021 earnings of $1.14 billion, or $1.07 per share, compared with $868 million, or 82 cents per share, in the first quarter of 2020. 

Southern Company (PRNewsFoto/Southern Company) (PRNewsfoto/Southern Company)

Excluding the items described under "Net Income – Excluding Items" in the table below, Southern Company earned $1.04 billion, or 98 cents per share, during the first quarter of 2021, compared with $825 million, or 78 cents per share, during the first quarter of 2020.  

Non-GAAP Financial Measures


Three Months Ended March

Net Income - Excluding Items (in millions)


2021

2020

Net Income - As Reported


$1,135

$868

Less:




   Estimated Loss on Plants Under Construction


(45)

(3)

  Tax Impact


11

1

   Acquisition and Disposition Impacts


-

38

  Tax Impact


-

(16)

   Wholesale Gas Services


166

31

       Tax Impact


(40)

(8)

Net Income – Excluding Items


$1,043

$825

       Average Shares Outstanding – (in millions)                     


1,060

1,057

Basic Earnings Per Share – Excluding Items


$0.98

$0.78



NOTE:

For more information regarding these non-GAAP adjustments, see the footnotes accompanying the Financial Highlights page of the earnings package.

Earnings drivers for the first quarter of 2021, as compared with 2020, were robust customer growth, higher residential sales and colder weather, partially offset by lower commercial and industrial sales.

"Southern Company experienced a strong start to the year," said Chairman, President and CEO, Thomas A. Fanning. "The economies in our service territories are starting to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic," added Fanning. "Customer demand is improving faster than we anticipated. Importantly, programs we implemented to keep customers connected during the pandemic – including alternative payment arrangements -- have helped those in need of assistance as we have continued to reliably provide for their energy needs. I am extremely proud of our employees and the ways we have partnered with our communities during this time."

First-quarter 2021 operating revenues were $5.9 billion, compared with $5.0 billion for the first quarter of 2020, an increase of 17.8 percent. This increase was primarily due to colder weather and higher fuel costs.

Southern Company's first-quarter earnings slides with supplemental financial information are available at http://investor.southerncompany.com.

Southern Company's financial analyst call will begin at 1 p.m. Eastern Time today, during which Fanning and Chief Financial Officer Andrew W. Evans will discuss earnings and provide a general business update, including an update on the Vogtle units 3 and 4 construction project. Investors, media and the public may listen to a live webcast of the call and view associated slides at http://investor.southerncompany.com/webcasts. A replay of the webcast will be available on the site for 12 months.

About Southern Company

Southern Company (NYSE: SO) is a leading energy company serving 9 million customers through its subsidiaries. The company provides clean, safe, reliable and affordable energy through electric operating companies in three states, natural gas distribution companies in four states, a competitive generation company serving wholesale customers across America, a leading distributed energy infrastructure company, a fiber optics network and telecommunications services. Southern Company brands are known for excellent customer service, high reliability and affordable prices below the national average. For more than a century, we have been building the future of energy and developing the full portfolio of energy resources, including carbon-free nuclear, advanced carbon capture technologies, natural gas, renewables, energy efficiency and storage technology. Through an industry-leading commitment to innovation and a low-carbon future, Southern Company and its subsidiaries develop the customized energy solutions our customers and communities require to drive growth and prosperity. Our uncompromising values ensure we put the needs of those we serve at the center of everything we do and govern our business to the benefit of our world. Our corporate culture and hiring practices have been recognized nationally by the U.S. Department of Defense, G.I. Jobs magazine, DiversityInc, Black Enterprise, Forbes and the Women's Choice Award. To learn more, visit www.southerncompany.com.

 



Southern Company

Financial Highlights

(In Millions of Dollars Except Earnings Per Share)






Three Months Ended March

Net Income–As Reported (See Notes)

2021


2020

  Traditional Electric Operating Companies

$

756



$

642


  Southern Power

97



75


Southern Company Gas

398



275


  Total

1,251



992


  Parent Company and Other

(116)



(124)


  Net Income–As Reported

$

1,135



$

868






  Basic Earnings Per Share1

$

1.07



$

0.82


  Average Shares Outstanding (in millions)

1,060



1,057


  End of Period Shares Outstanding (in millions)

1,059



1,056






Non-GAAP Financial Measures

Three Months Ended March

Net Income–Excluding Items (See Notes)

2021


2020

  Net Income–As Reported

$

1,135



$

868


Less:




Estimated Loss on Plants Under Construction2

(45)



(3)


Tax Impact

11



1


Acquisition and Disposition Impacts3



38


Tax Impact



(16)


Wholesale Gas Services4

166



31


Tax Impact

(40)



(8)


  Net Income–Excluding Items

$

1,043



$

825






  Basic Earnings Per Share–Excluding Items

$

0.98



$

0.78


-See Notes on the following page.


Southern Company
Financial Highlights

Notes


(1)

Dilution is not material in any period presented. Diluted earnings per share was $1.06 and $0.81 for the three months ended March 31, 2021 and 2020, respectively.

(2)

Earnings for the three months ended March 31, 2021 include a charge of $48 million pre tax ($36 million after tax) for an estimated probable loss on Georgia Power Company's construction of Plant Vogtle Units 3 and 4.  Further charges may occur; however, the amount and timing of any such charges are uncertain.  Earnings for the three months ended March 31, 2021 and 2020 include charges (net of salvage proceeds), associated legal expenses (net of insurance recoveries), and tax impacts related to Mississippi Power Company's integrated coal gasification combined cycle facility project in Kemper County, Mississippi.  Mississippi Power Company expects to incur additional pre-tax period costs to complete dismantlement of the abandoned gasifier-related assets and site restoration activities, including related costs for compliance and safety, asset retirement obligation accretion, and property taxes, totaling $10 million to $20 million annually through 2025.

(3)

Earnings for the three months ended March 31, 2020 primarily include a $39 million pre-tax ($23 million after-tax) gain on the sale of Southern Power Company's Plant Mankato. Further impacts may be recorded in future periods in connection with acquisition and disposition activity.

(4)

  Earnings for the three months ended March 31, 2021 and 2020 include Wholesale Gas Services business results. Presenting earnings and earnings per share excluding Wholesale Gas Services provides an additional measure of operating performance that excludes the volatility resulting from mark-to-market and lower of weighted average cost or current market price accounting adjustments.

 



Southern Company

Significant Factors Impacting EPS








Three Months Ended March


2021


2020


Change

Earnings Per Share–






As Reported1 (See Notes)

$

1.07



$

0.82



$

0.25








  Significant Factors:






  Traditional Electric Operating Companies





$

0.11


Southern Power





0.02


Southern Company Gas





0.12


Parent Company and Other






Increase in Shares






  Total–As Reported





$

0.25









Three Months Ended March

Non-GAAP Financial Measures

2021


2020


Change

Earnings Per Share–






Excluding Items (See Notes)

$

0.98



$

0.78



$

0.20








  Total–As Reported





$

0.25


Less:






Estimated Loss on Plants Under Construction2





(0.03)


Acquisition and Disposition Impacts3





(0.02)


Wholesale Gas Services4





0.10


  Total–Excluding Items





$

0.20


- See Notes on the following page.


Southern Company
Significant Factors Impacting EPS

Notes


(1)

Dilution is not material in any period presented. Diluted earnings per share was $1.06 and $0.81 for the three months ended March 31, 2021 and 2020, respectively.

(2)

Earnings for the three months ended March 31, 2021 include a charge of $48 million pre tax ($36 million after tax) for an estimated probable loss on Georgia Power Company's construction of Plant Vogtle Units 3 and 4.  Further charges may occur; however, the amount and timing of any such charges are uncertain.  Earnings for the three months ended March 31, 2021 and 2020 include charges (net of salvage proceeds), associated legal expenses (net of insurance recoveries), and tax impacts related to Mississippi Power Company's integrated coal gasification combined cycle facility project in Kemper County, Mississippi.  Mississippi Power Company expects to incur additional pre-tax period costs to complete dismantlement of the abandoned gasifier-related assets and site restoration activities, including related costs for compliance and safety, asset retirement obligation accretion, and property taxes, totaling $10 million to $20 million annually through 2025.

(3)

Earnings for the three months ended March 31, 2020 primarily include a $39 million pre-tax ($23 million after-tax) gain on the sale of Southern Power Company's Plant Mankato. Further impacts may be recorded in future periods in connection with acquisition and disposition activity.

(4)

Earnings for the three months ended March 31, 2021 and 2020 include Wholesale Gas Services business results. Presenting earnings and earnings per share excluding Wholesale Gas Services provides an additional measure of operating performance that excludes the volatility resulting from mark-to-market and lower of weighted average cost or current market price accounting adjustments.

 






Southern Company


EPS Earnings Analysis


Three Months Ended March 2021 vs. March 2020



Description

Cents





Retail Sales

(1)¢





Retail Revenue Impacts

2





Weather

6





Wholesale & Other Operating Revenues

4





Depreciation and Amortization, Interest Expense, Other

3





Total Traditional Electric Operating Companies

14¢





Southern Power

4





Southern Company Gas

2





Total Change in EPS (Excluding Items)

20¢





Estimated Loss on Plants Under Construction1

(3)





Acquisition and Disposition Impacts2

(2)





Wholesale Gas Services3

10





Total Change in EPS (As Reported)

25¢


- See Notes on the following page.



Southern Company
EPS Earnings Analysis

Notes


(1)

Earnings for the three months ended March 31, 2021 include a charge of $48 million pre tax ($36 million after tax) for an estimated probable loss on Georgia Power Company's construction of Plant Vogtle Units 3 and 4.  Further charges may occur; however, the amount and timing of any such charges are uncertain.  Earnings for the three months ended March 31, 2021 and 2020 include charges (net of salvage proceeds), associated legal expenses (net of insurance recoveries), and tax impacts related to Mississippi Power Company's integrated coal gasification combined cycle facility project in Kemper County, Mississippi.  Mississippi Power Company expects to incur additional pre-tax period costs to complete dismantlement of the abandoned gasifier-related assets and site restoration activities, including related costs for compliance and safety, asset retirement obligation accretion, and property taxes, totaling $10 million to $20 million annually through 2025.

(2)

Earnings for the three months ended March 31, 2020 primarily include a $39 million pre-tax ($23 million after-tax) gain on the sale of Southern Power Company's Plant Mankato. Further impacts may be recorded in future periods in connection with acquisition and disposition activity.

(3)

Earnings for the three months ended March 31, 2021 and 2020 include Wholesale Gas Services business results. Presenting earnings and earnings per share excluding Wholesale Gas Services provides an additional measure of operating performance that excludes the volatility resulting from mark-to-market and lower of weighted average cost or current market price accounting adjustments.

 



Southern Company

Consolidated Earnings

As Reported

(In Millions of Dollars)


Three Months Ended March


2021


2020


Change

Income Account-






Retail Electric Revenues-






Fuel

$

838



$

677



$

161


Non-Fuel

2,504



2,401



103


Wholesale Electric Revenues

545



418



127


Other Electric Revenues

170



151



19


Natural Gas Revenues

1,694



1,249



445


Other Revenues

159



122



37


Total Revenues

5,910



5,018



892


Fuel and Purchased Power

1,055



817



238


Cost of Natural Gas

583



439



144


Cost of Other Sales

82



55



27


Non-Fuel O&M

1,372



1,296



76


Depreciation and Amortization

871



857



14


Taxes Other Than Income Taxes

345



330



15


Estimated Loss on Plant Vogtle Units 3 and 4

48





48


(Gain) Loss on Dispositions, net

(44)



(39)



(5)


Total Operating Expenses

4,312



3,755



557


Operating Income

1,598



1,263



335


Allowance for Equity Funds Used During Construction

46



34



12


Earnings from Equity Method Investments

45



42



3


Interest Expense, Net of Amounts Capitalized

450



456



(6)


Other Income (Expense), net

58



103



(45)


Income Taxes

190



145



45


Net Income

1,107



841



266


Less:






Dividends on Preferred Stock of Subsidiaries

4



4




Net Loss Attributable to Noncontrolling Interests

(32)



(31)



(1)


NET INCOME ATTRIBUTABLE TO SOUTHERN COMPANY

$

1,135



$

868



$

267




Notes


- Certain prior year data may have been reclassified to conform with current year presentation.


 









Southern Company

Kilowatt-Hour Sales and Customers

(In Millions of KWHs)










Three Months Ended March


2021


2020


Change


Weather
Adjusted
Change

Kilowatt-Hour Sales-








Total Sales

46,422



44,263



4.9

%











Total Retail Sales-

34,651



34,045



1.8

%


(1.6)

%

Residential

12,040



10,866



10.8

%


1.1

%

Commercial

10,743



10,939



(1.8)

%


(3.1)

%

Industrial

11,708



12,066



(3.0)

%


(3.0)

%

Other

160



174



(7.7)

%


(8.2)

%









Total Wholesale Sales

11,771



10,218



15.2

%


N/A

















(In Thousands of Customers)










Period Ended March




2021


2020


Change



Regulated Utility Customers-








Total Utility Customers-

8,673


8,578


1.1%



Total Traditional Electric

4,338


4,280


1.4%



Southern Company Gas

4,335


4,298


0.9%




 





Southern Company


Financial Overview


As Reported


(In Millions of Dollars)



Three Months Ended March



2021


2020


% Change


Southern Company –







Operating Revenues

$

5,910



$

5,018



17.8

%


Earnings Before Income Taxes

1,297



986



31.5

%


Net Income Available to Common

1,135



868



30.8

%









Alabama Power –







Operating Revenues

$

1,559



$

1,351



15.4

%


Earnings Before Income Taxes

473



368



28.5

%


Net Income Available to Common

359



280



28.2

%









Georgia Power –







Operating Revenues

$

1,970



$

1,825



7.9

%


Earnings Before Income Taxes

369



347



6.3

%


Net Income Available to Common

351



331



6.0

%









Mississippi Power –







Operating Revenues

$

307



$

277



10.8

%


Earnings Before Income Taxes

49



38



28.9

%


Net Income Available to Common

45



32



40.6

%









Southern Power –







Operating Revenues

$

440



$

375



17.3

%


Earnings Before Income Taxes

55



51



7.8

%


Net Income Available to Common

97



75



29.3

%









Southern Company Gas –







Operating Revenues

$

1,694



$

1,249



35.6

%


Earnings Before Income Taxes

519



354



46.6

%


Net Income Available to Common

398



275



44.7

%



























Notes


- See Financial Highlights pages for discussion of certain significant items occurring during the periods


 

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