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Just Energy fiscal Q1'18 base EBITDA slides 21% YOY

Just Energy Group Inc. reported Aug. 9 fiscal first-quarter 2018 base EBITDA of C$32.5 million, down from C$41.1 million during the same quarter of fiscal 2017.

The approximately 21% decrease in base EBITDA was due to the impact of foreign exchange, primarily from the strengthening U.S. dollar resulting in an increase of C$1.0 million.

Gross margin for the fiscal quarter was C$157.6 million, a 3% decrease from C$162.7 million mainly due to the decline in the customer base, partially offset by a positive impact of C$3.6 million from foreign exchange.

Just Energy's fiscal first-quarter 2018 sales were down 6% to C$847.7 million, compared to C$898.4 million recorded in the corresponding quarter of fiscal 2017 as customer base decreased 7%.

The company's base funds from operations dropped 20% to C$20.5 million from C$25.7 million during the prior fiscal year.

Just Energy reaffirmed its fiscal full-year 2018 target of base EBITDA in the range of C$210 million to C$220 million. The company noted that operating expenditures to fund growth "present a challenge" to fiscal 2018, but in subsequent years management expects to return to double-digit percentage growth.