Last Update: 27-Feb-13 08:09 ET
First Solar shares plunge 13% following revenues that came in below consensus
First Solar (FSLR $27.06 -4.30) reported fourth quarter earnings of $2.04 per share, excluding non-recurring items, $0.30 better than the Capital IQ consensus of $1.74, while revenues rose 62.8% year/year to $1.07 billion versus the $1.32 bln consensus. The increase in net sales from the third quarter of 2012 was primarily due to increased revenue recognition for the Topaz project, and an increase in third-party module sales. Cash and Marketable Securities at the end of 2012 were $1 billion, up from $717 million at the end of the third quarter of 2012. Cash flows from operations were $328 million in the fourth quarter, and $762 million for the full-year 2012. Co issues downside guidance for Q1, sees EPS of $0.70-0.90, excluding non-recurring items, vs. $0.90 Capital IQ Consensus Estimate; sees Q1 revs of $650-750 million versus $821.58 million consensus Estimate; gross margin 25-27%. "Despite a very challenging market environment, we continued to make meaningful progress in all critical value drivers for the Company. We exceeded our module and balance-of-systems cost reduction targets for 2012, as announced in December 2011, further increased module efficiency and field performance, and achieved several key objectives in our strategy to develop and service new sustainable energy markets. We expect the market will remain turbulent for some time to come, but we have seen some evidence of improvement and believe we have the right strategy in place to retain our industry leadership by providing the best value for our customers."
First Solar (FSLR $27.06 -4.30) reported fourth quarter earnings of $2.04 per share, excluding non-recurring items, $0.30 better than the Capital IQ