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Calfrac Reports $83.8 Million Adjusted EBITDA With Best First-Quarter Margin Percentage Since 2012

May 9, 2023

CALGARY, Alberta, May 09, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Calfrac Well Services Ltd. (“Calfrac” or “the Company”) (TSX: CFW) announces its financial and operating results for the three months ended March 31, 2023. The following press release should be read in conjunction with the management’s discussion and analysis and interim consolidated financial statements and notes thereto as at March 31, 2023. Readers should also refer to the “Forward-looking statements” legal advisory and the section regarding “Non-GAAP Measures” at the end of this press release. All financial amounts and measures are expressed in Canadian dollars unless otherwise indicated. Additional information about Calfrac is available on the SEDAR website at, including the Company’s Annual Information Form for the year ended December 31, 2022.

Calfrac built upon the significant momentum generated in the second half of 2022 by continuing to leverage its execution in the field to produce solid year-over-year growth in net income and free cash flow during the first quarter of 2023. The Company generated Adjusted EBITDA from continuing operations of $83.8 million and consolidated cash flow from operations of $40.9 million during the first quarter of 2023, despite an increase of $36.2 million in consolidated working capital resulting from seasonal cash requirements in North America. Calfrac exited the quarter with net debt to Adjusted EBITDA of 1.16x as compared to 1.48x at year-end and the Company anticipates that its leverage will continue to decrease significantly throughout the remainder of the year. Calfrac is currently in the final stages of deploying seven repowered Tier IV dynamic gas blending (“DGB”) units and two new Tier IV DGB units into its current fracturing fleets in North America. Calfrac has also committed to the conversion of an additional 50 Tier II fracturing pumps from its North American operations into Tier IV DGB units as a part of the Company’s multi-year fracturing fleet modernization plan. These units are all expected to be deployed by the end of the first quarter of 2024. Calfrac expects continued robust activity in North America and Argentina will drive improved profitability and free cash flow growth in 2023. Any excess free cash flow will be dedicated to further debt repayment and, in turn, provide a strong return for shareholders.

Calfrac’s Chief Executive Officer, Pat Powell commented: “Calfrac executed on its brand promise and generated strong financial results during the first quarter, and we are excited to build upon this momentum throughout the remainder of the year and continue to make progress on our strategic priorities.”


 Three Months Ended Mar. 31,
 20232022 Change
(C$000s, except per share amounts)($)($) (%)
Revenue493,323294,524 67
Adjusted EBITDA(1)83,79422,764 268
Consolidated cash flows provided by operating activities40,89415,753 160
Capital expenditures34,47412,145 184
Net income (loss)36,313(18,030)NM
Per share – basic0.45(0.47)NM
Per share – diluted0.41(0.47)NM

As atMarch 31,December 31,Change
Cash and cash equivalents23,1698,498173
Working capital, end of period232,370183,58027
Total debt, end of period339,471329,1863

(1) Refer to “Non-GAAP Measures” on page 6 for further information.

During the quarter, the Company:

  • began reporting the financial and operating performance for the United States and Canada under a single North America division as part of its strategy to streamline its operations and reporting structure;
  • generated revenue of $493.3 million, an increase of 67 percent from the first quarter in 2022 resulting primarily from improved pricing and activity in North America and better pricing in Argentina;
  • reported Adjusted EBITDA of $83.8 million versus $22.8 million in the first quarter of 2022;
  • reported net income from continuing operations of $36.3 million or $0.41 per share diluted compared to a net loss of $18.0 million or $0.47 per share diluted during the first quarter in 2022;
  • reported period-end working capital of $232.4 million versus $183.6 million at December 31, 2022; and
  • incurred capital expenditures of $34.5 million, which included approximately $17.3 million related to the Company’s fracturing fleet modernization program.



 Three Months Ended Mar. 31,
(C$000s, except operational and exchange rate information)   
(unaudited)  Revised (1) 
Adjusted EBITDA(1)76,48721,416257
Adjusted EBITDA (%)18.58.9108
Fracturing revenue per job ($)43,23729,69946
Number of fracturing jobs9,2237,69020
Active pumping horsepower, end of period (000s)1,01779728
Active coiled tubing units, end of period (#)
US$/C$ average exchange rate(2)1.35261.26637

(1) Prior period amounts revised due to changes in segment reporting.
(2) Refer to “Non-GAAP Measures” on page 6 for further information.

(3) Source: Bank of Canada.

Although adverse weather impacted Calfrac’s operations in North America earlier this year, the Company’s commitment to safe and high quality operations resulted in the generation of its highest first-quarter Adjusted EBITDA margin since 2012. Calfrac’s focus on operational excellence during the first quarter set Company records for both stages completed in a day and sand pumped during a month. While the rate of input cost inflation has abated since last year, the Company continues to closely manage its field expenses to maximize operating margins and overall financial returns.

One of the Company’s most effective tools for maximizing shareholder returns is by leveraging its large operating scale to transfer equipment between districts and capitalize on seasonality factors as well as any dislocation in commodity prices. Calfrac expects consistent utilization and pricing for its 15 large fracturing fleets and six coiled tubing units in North America throughout 2023 as operators seek out high performing service companies to execute their development plans.

Calfrac is in the process of deploying its new Tier IV DGB equipment and anticipates capitalizing on enhanced demand from customers for this type of engine technology as it assists them in reaching their Environmental, Social and Governance (“ESG”) targets. Despite the recent volatility in commodity prices, the Company believes that the North American pressure pumping market can remain resilient given limited industry net capacity additions.


Revenue from Calfrac’s North American operations increased significantly to $413.0 million during the first quarter of 2023 from $239.9 million in the comparable quarter of 2022. The 72 percent increase in revenue can be attributed to a combination of a 46 percent increase in revenue per job period-over-period, combined with a 20 percent increase in the number of fracturing jobs completed. The higher revenue per job was the result of improved pricing for its services as the Company passed through higher input costs to its customers while also achieving net pricing gains beginning in the second quarter in 2022, combined with the impact of job mix. The increase in job count was mainly due to the Company operating 15 fleets during the quarter with more consistent utilization compared to an average of 10 operating fleets in the comparable quarter in 2022. The Company activated a 5th fleet in Canada in January with consistent utilization throughout the quarter. Despite the improved utilization relative to the comparable quarter, the first quarter in 2023 was impacted by severe weather conditions, resulting in the loss of approximately 6 operating days per fleet operating in the United States. Coiled tubing revenue also increased by 35 percent as compared to the first quarter in 2022 due to increased utilization and a larger number of crewed fleets operating in Canada.

The Company’s operations in North America generated Adjusted EBITDA of $76.5 million during the first quarter of 2023 compared to $21.4 million in the same period in 2022. This increase in Adjusted EBITDA was largely driven by strong net pricing gains and a dedicated focus on cost control which supported significant margin expansion relative to the comparable quarter in 2022. The Company was able to achieve an Adjusted EBITDA margin of 19 percent compared to 9 percent in the comparable quarter in 2022 through strong pricing and utilization for all of its active fleets, including an incremental 15th fleet that was activated at the beginning of the quarter.


 Three Months Ended Mar. 31,
(C$000s, except operational and exchange rate information)   
Adjusted EBITDA(1)11,5405,78999
Adjusted EBITDA (%)14.410.636
Fracturing revenue per job ($)88,17456,90755
Number of fracturing jobs5555324
Active pumping horsepower, end of period (000s)139139
US$/C$ average exchange rate(2)


(1) Refer to “Non-GAAP Measures” on page 6 for further information.
(2) Source: Bank of Canada.

Calfrac’s Argentina division anticipates higher profitability through increased utilization and job mix with dedicated contract work across all service lines in the Vaca Muerta shale play and the conventional basins of southern Argentina to generate improved year-over-year financial performance.


Calfrac’s Argentinean operations generated revenue of $80.3 million during the first quarter of 2023 compared to $54.6 million in the comparable quarter in 2022 primarily due to higher fracturing and coiled tubing revenue. Fracturing revenue increased due to a combination of larger job sizes and higher pricing, as the Company entered into a new contract at the beginning of the third quarter of 2022 at pricing levels that covered higher costs caused by inflationary pressures during the quarter. The Company also completed 4 percent more jobs than the comparable period in 2022 with the majority of the increase attributed to its operations in southern Argentina. Activity in the Company’s cementing operations increased by 20 percent offset partially by a 10 percent decrease in revenue per job due to job mix. The number of coiled tubing jobs decreased by 11 percent while revenue per job improved by 54 percent primarily due to job mix and higher pricing due to inflation.

The Company’s operations in Argentina generated Adjusted EBITDA of $11.5 million during the first quarter of 2023 compared to $5.8 million in the comparable quarter of 2022, while the Company’s Adjusted EBITDA margins as a percentage of revenue also improved to 14 percent from 11 percent. The Company entered into a new contract for its large fracturing fleet servicing the Vaca Muerta play at the beginning of the third quarter of 2022 with higher utilization and improved pricing which resulted in higher Adjusted EBITDA margins relative to the comparable period in 2022.


 Three Months Ended Mar. 31,
North America33,74810,956208
Continuing Operations34,47412,145184 

Capital expenditures were $34.5 million for the quarter ended March 31, 2023. Calfrac’s Board of Directors have approved a 2023 capital budget of approximately $155.0 million, which excludes expenditures related to fluid end components as these have been recorded as maintenance expenses beginning in January 2023 for all continuing reporting segments. This change in accounting estimate was based on new information surrounding the useful life of these components.


As part of Calfrac’s strategy to streamline and simplify its operational and administrative structure, the Company has decided to evaluate and report the financial and operating performance for the United States and Canada under a single North America division beginning with the interim financial statements and management's discussion and analysis for the three months ending March 31, 2023.


Three Months EndedJun. 30, Sep. 30, Dec. 31, Mar. 31, Jun. 30, Sep. 30, Dec. 31, Mar. 31,
 2021 2021 2021 2022 2022 2022 2022 2023
(C$000s, except per share and operating data)($) ($) ($) ($) ($) ($) ($) ($)
(unaudited)Revised (1) Revised (1) Revised (1) Revised (1) Revised (1) Revised (1)    
Revenue173,769 262,865 229,661 294,524 318,511 438,338 447,847 493,323
Adjusted EBITDA(2)550 30,925 8,382 22,763 48,992 86,032 75,954 83,794
Net income (loss)(35,516)(7,055)(29,132)(18,030)(6,776)45,352 14,757 36,313
Per share – basic(0.95)(0.19)(0.77)(0.47)(0.18)1.15 0.27 0.45
Per share – diluted(0.95)(0.19)(0.77)(0.47)(0.18)0.60 0.17 0.41
Capital expenditures17,166 24,133 14,868 12,145 15,241 24,745 35,810 34,474

(1) Adjusted EBITDA reflects a change in definition and excludes realized foreign exchange gains and losses.
(2) Refer to “Non-GAAP Measures” on page 6 for further information.

Certain supplementary measures presented in this press release, including Adjusted EBITDA, Adjusted EBITDA Margin and the ratio of net debt to Adjusted EBITDA, do not have any standardized meaning under IFRS and, because IFRS have been incorporated as Canadian generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP), these supplementary measures are also non-GAAP measures. These measures have been described and presented in order to provide shareholders and potential investors with additional information regarding the Company’s financial results, liquidity and ability to generate funds to finance its operations. These measures may not be comparable to similar measures presented by other entities, and are explained below.

Adjusted EBITDA is defined in the Company’s credit agreement for covenant purposes as net income or loss for the period adjusted for interest, income taxes, depreciation and amortization, foreign exchange losses (gains), non-cash stock-based compensation, and gains and losses that are extraordinary or non-recurring. Adjusted EBITDA is presented because it is used in the calculation of the Company’s bank covenants. Adjusted EBITDA Margin is the ratio of Adjusted EBITDA to revenue for the period expressed as a percentage. Adjusted EBITDA for the period was calculated as follows:

Three Months Ended March 31,2023 2022 
(unaudited) Revised 
Net income (loss) from continuing operations36,313 (18,030)
Add back (deduct):  
Depreciation30,162 29,954 
Foreign exchange losses1,486 3,837 
(Gain) loss on disposal of property, plant and equipment(537)1,038 
Litigation settlement(6,805) 
Restructuring charges1,333 701 
Stock-based compensation544 1,034 
Interest8,174 9,816 
Income taxes13,124 (5,586)
Adjusted EBITDA(1)83,794 22,764 

(1) For bank covenant purposes, EBITDA includes $4.6 million income from discontinued operations for the three months ended March 31, 2023 (three months ended March 31, 2022 – $0.4 loss) and the deduction of an additional $2.9 million of lease payments for the three months ended March 31, 2023 (three months ended March 31, 2022 – $2.4 million) that would have been recorded as operating expenses prior to the adoption of IFRS 16.

The definition and calculation of the ratio of net debt to Adjusted EBITDA for the year ended December 31, 2022, is disclosed in Note 15 to the Company’s year-end consolidated financial statements. The definition and calculation of this ratio for the twelve months ended March 31, 2023, is disclosed in Note 10 to the Company’s interim financial statements for the corresponding period.


This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of applicable securities laws. The use of any of the words “seek”, “anticipate”, “plan”, “continue”, “estimate”, “expect”, “may”, “will”, “project”, “predict”, “potential”, “targeting”, “intend”, “could”, “might”, “should”, “believe”, “forecast” or similar words suggesting future outcomes, are forward-looking statements.

In particular, forward-looking statements in this press release include, but are not limited to, statements with respect to activity, demand, utilization and outlook for the Company’s operating divisions in North America and Argentina; the supply and demand fundamentals of the pressure pumping industry; input costs, margin and service pricing trends and strategies; operating and financing strategies, performance, priorities, metrics and estimates, such as the Company’s strategic priorities to maximize free cash flow, repay debt and capital investment plans, including the Company's fleet modernization plan and timing thereof; the Company’s Russian division, including the planned sale of the Russian division; the Company’s debt, liquidity and financial position; the Company’s service quality and the Company’s intentions and expectations with respect to the foregoing.

These statements are derived from certain assumptions and analyses made by the Company based on its experience and perception of historical trends, current conditions, expected future developments and other factors that it believes are appropriate in the circumstances, including, but not limited to, the economic and political environment in which the Company operates, including the current state of the pressure pumping market upcycle; the Company’s expectations for its customers’ capital budgets and geographical areas of focus; the effect of unconventional oil and gas projects have had on supply and demand fundamentals for oil and natural gas; the effect of environmental, social and governance factors on customer and investor preferences and capital deployment; the effect of the military conflict in the Ukraine and related international sanctions and counter-sanctions and restrictions by Russia on the Company’s ownership and planned sale of the Russian division; industry equipment levels including the number of active fracturing fleets marketed by the Company’s competitors and the timing of deployment of the Company’s fleet upgrades; the Company’s existing contracts and the status of current negotiations with key customers and suppliers; the continued effectiveness of cost reduction measures instituted by the Company; and the likelihood that the current tax and regulatory regime will remain substantially unchanged.

Forward-looking statements are subject to a number of known and unknown risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from the Company’s expectations. Such risk factors include but are not limited to: (A) industry risks, including but not limited to, global economic conditions and the level of exploration, development and production for oil and natural gas in North America and Argentina; excess equipment levels; impacts of conservation measures and technological advances on the demand for the Company’s services; hazards inherent in the industry; the ongoing impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic; the actions of activist shareholders and the increasing reluctance of institutional investors to invest in the industry in which the Company operates; and an intensely competitive oilfield services industry; (B) business operations risks, including but not limited to, fleet reinvestment risk, including the ability of the Company to finance the capital necessary for equipment upgrades to support its operational needs while meeting government and customer requirements and preferences; difficulty retaining, replacing or adding personnel; failure to improve and adapt equipment, proprietary fluid chemistries and other products and services; reliance on equipment suppliers and fabricators for timely delivery and quality of equipment; a concentrated customer base; seasonal volatility and climate change; cybersecurity risks, and activism; (C) financial risks, including but not limited to, price escalation and availability of raw materials, diesel fuel and component parts; restrictions on the Company’s access to capital, including the impacts of covenants under the Company’s lending documents; direct and indirect exposure to volatile credit markets; fluctuations in currency exchange rates and increased inflation; actual results which are materially different from management estimates and assumptions; insufficient internal controls; and possible impacts on the Company’s access to capital and common share price given a significant number of common shares are controlled by two directors of the Company; (D) geopolitical risks, including but not limited to, foreign operations exposure, including risks relating to unsettled political conditions, war, including the ongoing Russia and Ukraine conflict and any expansion of that conflict, foreign exchange rates and controls, and international trade and regulatory controls and sanctions; the impacts of a delay of sale or failure to sell the Company's discontinued operations in Russia, including failure to receive any applicable regulatory approvals and reputational risks; foreign legal actions and unknown consequences of such actions; and risk associated with compliance with applicable law; (E) legal and regulatory risks, including but not limited to, federal, provincial and state legislative and regulatory initiatives; health, safety and environmental laws and regulations; and legal and administrative proceedings; and (F) environmental, social and governance risks, including but not limited to, failure to effectively and timely address the energy transition; legal and regulatory initiatives to limit greenhouse gas emissions; and the direct and indirect costs of various existing and proposed climate change regulations. Further information about these and other risks and uncertainties are set forth in the Company’s most recently filed Annual Information Form under the heading “Risk Factors” which is available on the SEDAR website at under Company’s profile.

Consequently, all of the forward-looking statements made in this press release are qualified by these cautionary statements and there can be no assurance that actual results or developments anticipated by the Company will be realized, or that they will have the expected consequences or effects on the Company or its business or operations. These statements speak only as of the respective date of this press release or the document by reference herein. The Company assumes no obligation to update publicly any such forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required pursuant to applicable securities laws.

The business of Calfrac is subject to certain risks and uncertainties. Prior to making any investment decision regarding Calfrac, investors should carefully consider, among other things, the risk factors set forth in the Company’s most recently filed Annual Information Form under the heading “Risk Factors” which is available on the SEDAR website at under Company’s profile. Copies of the Annual Information Form may also be obtained on request without charge from Calfrac at Suite 500, 407 - 8th Avenue S.W., Calgary, Alberta, Canada, T2P 1E5, or at

Calfrac's common shares and warrants are publicly traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the trading symbols "CFW" and “CFW.WT”, respectively.

Calfrac provides specialized oilfield services to exploration and production companies designed to increase the production of hydrocarbons from wells with continuing operations focused throughout western Canada, the United States and Argentina. During the first quarter of 2022, management committed to a plan to sell the Company’s Russian division, resulting in the associated assets and liabilities being classified as held for sale and presented in the Company’s financial statements as discontinued operations. The results of the Company’s discontinued operations are excluded from the discussion and figures presented above unless otherwise noted. See Note 4 to the Company’s audited consolidated financial statements for the year ended December 31, 2022 for additional information on the Company’s discontinued operations.

Further information regarding Calfrac Well Services Ltd., including the most recently filed Annual Information Form, can be accessed on the Company’s website at or under the Company’s public filings found at

Calfrac will be conducting a conference call for interested analysts, brokers, investors and news media representatives to review its 2023 first-quarter results at 10:00 a.m. (Mountain Time) on Tuesday, May 9, 2023. To participate in the conference call please register at the URL link below. Once registered, you will receive a dial-in number and a unique PIN, which will allow you to ask questions.

The call will also be webcast and can be accessed through the link below. A replay of the webcast call will also be available on Calfrac’s website for at least 90 days.


 March 31, December 31, 
 2023 2022 
(C$000s) (unaudited)($) ($) 
Current assets  
Cash and cash equivalents23,169 8,498 
Accounts receivable314,040 238,769 
Inventories107,286 108,866 
Prepaid expenses and deposits15,540 12,297 
 460,035 368,430 
Assets classified as held for sale54,945 45,940 
 514,980 414,370 
Non-current assets  
Property, plant and equipment550,097 543,475 
Right-of-use assets22,333 22,908 
Deferred income tax assets9,187 15,000 
 581,617 581,383 
Total assets1,096,597 995,753 
Current liabilities  
Accounts payable and accrued liabilities210,138 171,603 
Income taxes payable5,553 964 
Current portion of long-term debt2,553 2,534 
Current portion of lease obligations9,421 9,749 
 227,665 184,850 
Liabilities directly associated with assets classified as held for sale27,880 18,852 
 255,545 203,702 
Non-current liabilities  
Long-term debt339,471 329,186 
Lease obligations13,416 13,443 
Deferred income tax liabilities29,339 26,450 
 382,226 369,079 
Total liabilities637,771 572,781 
Capital stock865,716 865,059 
Conversion rights on convertible notes212 212 
Contributed surplus70,602 70,141 
Warrants36,238 36,558 
Accumulated deficit(542,207)(580,544)
Accumulated other comprehensive income28,265 31,546 
Total equity458,826 422,972 
Total liabilities and equity1,096,597 995,753 


 Three Months Ended March 31,
 2023 2022 
(C$000s, except per share data) (unaudited)($) ($) 
Revenue493,323 294,524 
Cost of sales425,636 290,824 
Gross profit67,687 3,700 
Selling, general and administrative9,127 12,625 
Foreign exchange losses1,486 3,837 
(Gain) loss on disposal of property, plant and equipment(537)1,038 
Interest8,174 9,816 
 18,250 27,316 
Income (loss) before income tax49,437 (23,616)
Income tax expense (recovery)  
Current4,398 44 
Deferred8,726 (5,630)
 13,124 (5,586)
Net income (loss) from continuing operations36,313 (18,030)
Net income (loss) from discontinued operations2,024 (3,508)
Net income (loss) for the period38,337 (21,538)
Earnings (loss) per share – basic  
Continuing operations0.45 (0.47)
Discontinued operations0.03 (0.09)
 0.47 (0.56)
Earnings (loss) per share – diluted  
Continuing operations0.41 (0.47)
Discontinued operations0.02 (0.09)
 0.43 (0.56)


 Three Months Ended March 31,
 2023 2022 
(C$000s) (unaudited)($) ($) 
Net income (loss) for the period38,337 (21,538)
Adjusted for the following:  
Depreciation30,162 30,153 
Stock-based compensation544 1,034 
Unrealized foreign exchange (gains) losses(292)4,173 
(Gain) loss on disposal of property, plant and equipment(538)1,037 
Impairment of inventory1,100  
Impairment of other assets1,151  
Interest8,143 9,816 
Interest paid(10,243)(12,463)
Deferred income taxes8,726 (5,630)
Changes in items of working capital(36,196)9,171 
Cash flows provided by operating activities40,894 15,753 
Bridge loan proceeds 15,000 
Issuance of long-term debt, net of debt issuance costs33,233 8,431 
Long-term debt repayments(25,000) 
Lease obligation principal repayments(2,604)(2,083)
Proceeds on issuance of common shares from the exercise of warrants and stock options254 704 
Cash flows provided by financing activities5,883 22,052 
Purchase of property, plant and equipment(35,397)(16,104)
Proceeds on disposal of property, plant and equipment199 303 
Proceeds on disposal of right-of-use assets516 304 
Cash flows used in investing activities(34,682)(15,497)
Effect of exchange rate changes on cash and cash equivalents(2,807)(7,020)
Increase in cash and cash equivalents9,288 15,288 
Cash and cash equivalents (bank overdraft), beginning of period18,393 (1,351)
Cash and cash equivalents, end of period27,681 13,937 
Included in the cash and cash equivalents per the balance sheet23,169  
Included in the assets held for sale/discontinued operations4,512  

For further information, please contact:
Pat Powell, Chief Executive Officer
Mike Olinek, Chief Financial Officer

Telephone: 403-266-6000 


A very big thank you to all involved in the planning and execution of this job. I think we may have found the recipe – CalVisc rocks!

Vice President

Operations , Large Independent Oil & Gas Producer