Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Palm Inc. (NASDAQ: PALM): Q3 Earnings Preview 2010

Palm Inc. (NASDAQ: PALM) is scheduled to release its fiscal third-quarter 2009 financial results after the market close on Thursday, March 18, 2010. Analysts, on average, expect the company to report a loss of 37 cents a share on revenue of $348.36 million. In the year ago period, the company posted a loss of 86 cents per share on revenue of $90.62 million.

Palm, Inc. provides mobile products for individual users and business customers worldwide. The company offers integrated technologies that enable people to stay connected with their family, friends, and colleagues; access and share the information; and manage their daily lives on the go.

In the preceding fiscal-second quarter, the Sunnyvale, California-based company reported a net loss of $85.37 million or $0.54 per share, compared to a loss of $508.59 million, or $4.64 per share, in the year-ago quarter. Non-GAAP net loss narrowed to $59.58 million or $0.37 per share from $80.22 million or $0.73 per share in the same quarter last year. Quarterly revenues on GAAP basis dropped to $78.11 million from $191.62 million for the prior-year quarter. On adjusted basis, non-GAAP Adjusted Revenues was $301.98 million. Analysts, on average, expected the company to report a loss of $0.32 per share on revenue $266.17 million.

Total smarphone units shipped during the quarter rose by 41% year-over-year to 783 thousand and smartphone sell-through was 573,000 units, down 4% from same quarter last year.

Recently, the company warned that it will generate third-quarter revenue well below expectations as a result of lower-than-projected sales of its latest wireless smartphones. Palm said it expects fiscal third quarter revenue to be in the range of $285 million to $310 million on a GAAP basis and in the range of $300 million to $320 million on a non-GAAP basis.

As a result, Palm said that it expects fiscal year 2010 revenues to be well below its prior guidance of $1.6 billion to $1.8 billion.

"Revenues for the quarter and full year are being impacted by slower than expected consumer adoption of the company's products that has resulted in lower than expected order volumes from carriers and the deferral of orders to future periods," the company said in a statement.
The smartphone maker said that it will close the fiscal-third quarter with cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments totaling more than $500 million.

Once a leader in the smart phone market, Palm fell behind Apple Inc. and Research In Motion Ltd. over the last several years. In order to resuurect its fledgling fortunes, the company launched its new Pre touch-screen phone in early June and Pixi, the Pre's smaller, lighter cousin late last year. Both had been initially been offered exclusively on the Sprint Nextel Corp. network. Verizon Wireless, a venture between Verizon Communications Inc. and Vodafone Group Plc, began selling the Pre and Pixi recently. However, analysts assert that sales of the devices came under pressure from a lack of promotion as well as heavy competition from such rival devices as the Motorola Droid and the BlackBerry.

Industry experts now contend that it could eventually face a liquidity crunch because of cash burn rate and its ongoing losses. It is also being talked about as a potential takeover target.

In terms of stock performance, Palm shares have lost nearly 19% over the past year.

Full Disclosure: None.

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