February 19, 2009

Century Reports 2008 Financial Results

MONTEREY, CA, Feb 19, 2009 (MARKET WIRE via COMTEX News Network) -- Century Aluminum Company (NASDAQ: CENX) today reported a net loss of $700.2 million ($14.27 per basic and diluted share) for the fourth quarter of 2008. Reported fourth quarter results were impacted by a charge for goodwill impairment of $94.8 million ($1.93 per basic and diluted share), a tax charge of $522.9 million ($10.66 per basic and diluted share) related to the recording of a valuation allowance on deferred tax assets and an inventory write down to market value of $55.9 million ($1.14 per basic and diluted share).

For the fourth quarter of 2007, the company reported a net loss of $112.3 million ($2.74 per basic and diluted share). Reported results for this quarter were impacted by an after-tax charge of $147.7 million ($3.61 per basic share) for mark-to-market adjustments on forward contracts that do not qualify for cash flow hedge accounting and by a tax benefit of $4.0 million ($0.10 per basic share) related to the increase in the carrying amount of deferred tax assets as a result of a state tax law change. The dilutive effect of the options, convertible notes and service-based awards would reduce basic EPS by $0.05 per share.

Recent highlights include:


--  2008 direct and toll shipment volumes totaled a record 803,771 metric
    tons, a 5 percent increase from 2007.  During the fourth quarter, the
    Grundartangi smelter shipped at an annualized rate of more than 276,000
    metric tons.
--  All primary aluminum facilities operated safely at or above available
    potline capacity during 2008.
--  In December, the company issued a WARN notice and implemented the
    immediate curtailment of one potline at the Ravenswood, West Virginia
    smelter. Pursuant to the WARN notice, an orderly curtailment of the entire
    smelter was essentially completed by mid February.
--  The company completed a public offering of 24.5 million shares of its
    common stock in early February.  Net proceeds were approximately $104
    million.
--  Salaried staff reductions of approximately 13 percent were implemented
    at the Hawesville, KY smelter and Monterey, CA headquarters.
--  The company's greenfield smelter project near Helguvik, Iceland,
    remains under review.  Site activity is continuing at a minimal level.


For 2008, Century reported a net loss of $898.3 million ($20.07 per basic and diluted share). Included in these results is a net after tax charge of $742.1 million ($16.58 per basic and diluted share) for mark-to-market adjustments on forward contracts that do not qualify for cash flow hedge accounting. Full year results were also impacted by a charge for goodwill impairment of $94.8 million ($2.12 per basic and diluted share), a tax charge of $522.9 million ($11.68 per basic and diluted share) related to the recording of a valuation allowance on deferred tax assets and an inventory write down to market value of $55.9 million ($1.25 per basic and diluted share).

For 2007, Century reported a net loss of $101.2 million ($2.72 per basic and diluted share). Results for 2007 include a net after-tax charge of $328.3 million ($8.83 per basic share) for mark-to-market adjustments on forward contracts that do not qualify for cash flow hedge accounting. 2007 results were also impacted by a tax benefit of $8.3 million ($0.22 per basic share) related to the increase in the carrying amount of deferred tax assets as a result of a state tax law change.

Sales for the fourth quarter of 2008 were $402.2 million compared with $432.1 million for the fourth quarter of 2007. Shipments of primary aluminum for the 2008 fourth quarter were 202,259 tonnes, compared with 198,138 tonnes shipped in the year-ago quarter. Sales for 2008 were $1,971 million compared with $1,798 million for 2007, and total 2008 primary aluminum shipments of 803,771 tonnes compared with 766,951 tonnes shipped in 2007.

"Century has taken aggressive action in response to the global economic crisis and its impact on commodity prices," said president and chief executive officer Logan W. Kruger. "In the United States, we have begun implementation of the difficult actions required to bridge the current environment and lay the groundwork for a stronger company when metal markets strengthen.

"Our greenfield smelter project near Helguvik, Iceland, remains under review; new construction activity has been essentially halted. We are in the process of rescoping the project in its entirety and are also reviewing financing options. We continue to view Helguvik as an excellent investment for our shareholders and remain convinced that the environment in Iceland will remain attractive to our business over the long term. In addition, our forecasts of capital and operating costs have fallen since the project's inception.

"We continue to believe the factors supporting the long-term growth of aluminum demand remain in place. We expect that Century's improved liquidity and streamlined cost position will enable us to weather the current global financial crisis and prepare the company for renewed profitable growth once aluminum markets stabilize and recover. We have further options to enhance both our cost position and liquidity, and will implement them as appropriate to protect the long-term value of the company."

Century Aluminum Company owns primary aluminum capacity in the United States and Iceland, as well as an ownership interest in alumina and bauxite assets in the United States and Jamaica. Century's corporate offices are located in Monterey, California.

Century Aluminum's quarterly conference call is scheduled for 5:00 p.m. Eastern time today. To listen to the conference call and to view related presentation materials, go to www.centuryaluminum.com and click on the conference call link on the homepage.

Certified Advisors for the First North market of the OMX Nordic Exchange Iceland hf. for Global Depositary Receipts in Iceland:

Helga Gunnarsdottir, Director-Corporate Finance, NBI hf.

Astros Vidarsdottir, Senior Manager-Corporate Finance, NBI hf.

Cautionary Statement

This press release may contain "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of U.S. federal securities laws. The company has based its forward-looking statements on current expectations and projections about the future; however, these statements are subject to risks, uncertainties and assumptions, any of which could cause the company's actual results to differ materially from those expressed in its forward-looking statements. More information about these risks, uncertainties and assumptions can be found in the risk factors and forward-looking statements cautionary language contained in the company's Annual Report on Form 10-K and in other filings made with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The company does not undertake, and specifically disclaims, any obligation to revise any forward-looking statements to reflect the occurrence of anticipated or unanticipated events or circumstances after the date such forward-looking statements are made.

                         Century Aluminum Company
                  Consolidated Statements of Operations
                 (in Thousands, Except Per Share Amounts)
                                (Unaudited)
                           Three months ended            Year ended
                              December 31,              December 31,
                        ------------------------  ------------------------
                            2008         2007         2008         2007
                        -----------  -----------  -----------  -----------
NET SALES:
  Third-party customers $   271,119  $   337,678  $ 1,474,815  $ 1,449,750
  Related parties           131,079       94,452      495,961      348,413
                        -----------  -----------  -----------  -----------
                            402,198      432,130    1,970,776    1,798,163
COST OF GOODS SOLD          464,776      372,207    1,659,152    1,434,700
                        -----------  -----------  -----------  -----------
GROSS PROFIT (LOSS)         (62,578)      59,923      311,624      363,463
SELLING, GENERAL AND
 ADMINISTRATIVE
 EXPENSES                     4,253       19,136       48,223       59,920
GOODWILL IMPAIRMENT          94,844            -       94,844            -
                        -----------  -----------  -----------  -----------
OPERATING INCOME (LOSS)    (161,675)      40,787      168,557      303,543
INTEREST EXPENSE - Net       (4,972)      (2,983)     (17,015)     (22,109)
INTEREST INCOME
 (EXPENSE) - RELATED
 PARTIES                        171            -         (827)           -
NET LOSS ON FORWARD
 CONTRACTS                  (13,253)    (228,978)    (744,448)    (508,875)
OTHER INCOME (EXPENSE)
 - Net                         (581)         124       (2,178)      (3,302)
                        -----------  -----------  -----------  -----------
LOSS BEFORE INCOME
 TAXES AND EQUITY
 IN EARNINGS OF JOINT
 VENTURES                  (180,310)    (191,050)    (595,911)    (230,743)
INCOME TAX (EXPENSE)
 BENEFIT                   (524,282)      74,453     (319,311)     113,849
                        -----------  -----------  -----------  -----------
LOSS BEFORE EQUITY IN
 EARNINGS OF JOINT
 VENTURES                  (704,592)    (116,597)    (915,222)    (116,894)
EQUITY IN EARNINGS OF
 JOINT VENTURES               4,440        4,294       16,906       15,645
                        -----------  -----------  -----------  -----------
NET LOSS                $  (700,152) $  (112,303) $  (898,316) $  (101,249)
                        ===========  ===========  ===========  ===========
LOSS PER COMMON SHARE
  Basic - Net loss      $    (14.27) $     (2.74) $    (20.07) $     (2.72)
  Diluted - Net loss    $    (14.27) $     (2.74) $    (20.07) $     (2.72)
WEIGHTED AVERAGE COMMON
 SHARES OUTSTANDING
  Basic                      49,051       40,973       44,759       37,199
  Diluted                    49,051       40,973       44,759       37,199
                         Century Aluminum Company
                        Consolidated Balance Sheets
                          (Dollars in Thousands)
                                (Unaudited)
                                             December 31,    December 31,
ASSETS                                           2008            2007
                                             -------------   -------------
Current Assets:
  Cash                                       $     129,400   $      60,962
  Restricted cash                                      865             873
  Short-term investments                            13,686         280,169
  Accounts receivable - net                         60,859          93,451
  Due from affiliates                               39,062          26,693
  Inventories                                      138,111         175,101
  Prepaid and other current assets                  99,861          40,091
  Deferred taxes - current portion                  32,290          69,858
                                             -------------   -------------
     Total current assets                          514,134         747,198
Property, plant and equipment - net              1,340,037       1,260,040
Intangible asset - net                              32,527          47,603
Goodwill                                                 -          94,844
Deferred taxes - less current portion                    -         321,068
Due from affiliates - less current portion           7,599               -
Other assets                                       141,802         107,518
                                             -------------   -------------
     Total                                   $   2,036,099   $   2,578,271
                                             =============   =============
LIABILITIES AND SHAREHOLDERS' EQUITY
Current Liabilities:
  Accounts payable, trade                    $     102,143   $      79,482
  Due to affiliates                                 70,957         216,754
  Accrued and other current liabilities             58,777          60,482
  Accrued employee benefits costs - current
   portion                                          12,070          11,997
  Convertible senior notes                         175,000         175,000
  Industrial revenue bonds                           7,815           7,815
                                             -------------   -------------
     Total current liabilities                     426,762         551,530
                                             -------------   -------------
Senior unsecured notes payable                     250,000         250,000
Revolving credit facility                           25,000               -
Accrued pension benefits costs - less
 current portion                                    50,008          14,427
Accrued postretirement benefits costs - less
 current portion                                   219,539         184,853
Due to affiliates - less current portion                 -         913,683
Other liabilities                                   33,464          39,643
Deferred taxes                                      71,805          62,931
                                             -------------   -------------
     Total noncurrent liabilities                  649,816       1,465,537
                                             -------------   -------------
Shareholders' Equity:
  Preferred stock (one cent par value,
   5,000,000 shares authorized; 155,787
   shares outstanding at December 31, 2008
   and none at December 31, 2007)                        2               -
  Common stock (one cent par value,
   100,000,000 shares authorized; 49,052,692
   shares outstanding at December 31, 2008
   and 40,988,058 at December 31, 2007)                491             410
  Additional paid-in capital                     2,240,014         857,787
  Accumulated other comprehensive loss            (137,208)        (51,531)
  Accumulated deficit                           (1,143,778)       (245,462)
                                             -------------   -------------
     Total shareholders' equity                    959,521         561,204
                                             -------------   -------------
     Total                                   $   2,036,099   $   2,578,271
                                             =============   =============
                         Century Aluminum Company
                  Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows
                          (Dollars in Thousands)
                                (Unaudited)
                                                         Year ended
                                                         December 31,
                                                       2008        2007
                                                    ----------  ----------
CASH FLOWS FROM OPERATING ACTIVITIES:
  Net loss                                          $ (898,316) $ (101,249)
  Adjustments to reconcile net loss to net cash
   provided by (used in) operating activities:
    Unrealized net loss on forward contracts           602,389     411,023
    Goodwill impairment                                 94,844           -
    Depreciation and amortization                       84,268      78,060
    Deferred income taxes                              329,526    (131,819)
    Pension and other postretirement benefits           16,430      12,688
    Workers' compensation                                 (359)       (743)
    Stock-based compensation                            11,753       5,962
    Excess tax benefits from share-based
     compensation                                         (657)       (588)
    Loss on disposal of assets                              49          69
    Non-cash loss on early extinguishment of debt            -       2,461
    Undistributed earnings of joint ventures           (16,906)    (15,645)
    Change in operating assets and liabilities:
      Accounts receivable - net                         32,592      19,920
      Purchase of short-term trading securities       (106,532)   (721,271)
      Sale of short-term trading securities            373,014     441,102
      Due from affiliates                              (12,369)     10,850
      Inventories                                       37,026     (26,080)
      Prepaid and other current assets                  11,502     (12,540)
      Accounts payable, trade                            4,736      18,211
      Due to affiliates                               (223,868)     13,188
      Accrued and other current liabilities            (69,728)    (16,912)
      Other - net                                          899       7,558
                                                    ----------  ----------
    Net cash provided by (used in) operating
     activities                                        270,293      (5,755)
                                                    ----------  ----------
CASH FLOWS FROM INVESTING ACTIVITIES:
  Purchase of property, plant and equipment            (50,787)    (24,240)
  Nordural expansion                                   (80,314)    (88,764)
  Investments in and advances to joint ventures -
   net                                                 (35,220)          -
  Proceeds from sale of property, plant and
   equipment                                               331         695
  Restricted cash deposits                                   8       3,738
                                                    ----------  ----------
    Net cash used in investing activities             (165,982)   (108,571)
                                                    ----------  ----------
CASH FLOWS FROM FINANCING ACTIVITIES:
  Borrowings of long-term debt                               -      30,000
  Repayment of long-term debt                                -    (369,436)
  Repayment of long-term debt - related party         (505,197)          -
  Borrowing under revolving credit facility             35,000           -
  Repayment under revolving credit facility            (10,000)          -
  Excess tax benefits from share-based compensation        657         588
  Issuance of common stock - net of issuance costs     443,667     417,771
                                                    ----------  ----------
    Net cash provided by (used in) financing
     activities                                        (35,873)     78,923
                                                    ----------  ----------
CHANGE IN CASH                                          68,438     (35,403)
CASH, BEGINNING OF YEAR                                 60,962      96,365
                                                    ----------  ----------
CASH, END OF YEAR                                   $  129,400  $   60,962
                                                    ==========  ==========
                         Century Aluminum Company
                          Selected Operating Data
                                (Unaudited)
                       SHIPMENTS - PRIMARY ALUMINUM
                         Direct (1)                       Toll
                ----------------------------- -----------------------------
                 Metric     (000)              Metric     (000)     (000)
                  Tons     Pounds    $/Pound    Tons     Pounds   Revenue
                --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ---------
2008
4th Quarter       132,477   292,061 $    1.00    69,783   153,844 $ 111,159
3rd Quarter       135,200   298,065 $    1.36    68,418   150,835 $ 148,227
2nd Quarter       131,639   290,214 $    1.37    66,533   146,681 $ 147,128
1st Quarter       133,004   293,223 $    1.17    66,717   147,086 $ 127,177
                --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ---------
Total             532,320 1,173,563 $    1.23   271,451   598,446 $ 533,691
2007
4th Quarter       133,002   293,219 $    1.07    65,136   143,600 $ 119,635
3rd Quarter       134,495   296,509 $    1.13    61,046   134,583 $ 120,554
2nd Quarter       132,496   292,104 $    1.19    56,154   123,798 $ 117,667
1st Quarter       131,568   290,057 $    1.15    53,054   116,964 $ 114,383
                --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ---------
Total             531,561 1,171,889 $    1.13   235,390   518,945 $ 472,239
(1) Does not include Toll shipments from Nordural Grundartangi

Contacts:
Mike Dildine (media)
831-642-9364

Shelly Lair (investors)
831-642-9357


SOURCE: Century Aluminum Company


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