Shares of $405 million (market cap) optical component maker Finisar (FNSR) are up 13 cents, or 11%, today at $1.31, after the company last night announced sales and profit that beat estimates following Finisar’s merger with fellow component maker Optium, announced back in May.
Finisar reported sales of $128.7 million for the first fiscal quarter ended August 3, above estimates of about $122 million, and profit of 4 cents a share, a penny ahead of estimates. That was a 22% jump, year over year, and were also ahead of Finisar’s original forecast of revenue in a range of $120 million to $125 million Finisar also reported preliminary results for Optium, with whom it closed the merger last month, for Optium’s fiscal fourth quarter ended August 2. Optium’s $47.2 million in sales was a 76% jump from the year-earlier quarter.
Strong growth wasn’t the only promising sign. I spoke Tuesday morning with Finisar CEO Eitan Gertel and CFO Steve Workman, who both emphasized improvements in the gross profit margin as a percentage of sales. Finisar’s gross profit rose from 30.6% to 38.4%, while Optium’s jumped from 23.5% to 25.7%. The premise of the merger is that a larger selection of optical products will lead to greater profit as Finisar’s owned manufacturing facilities in the far east allow for the company to improve Optium’s gross profit through manufacturing efficiencies. Both companies get over 10% of sales from Cisco Systems (CSCO), with a large portion of that, in Finisar’s case, coming from optical transceiver sales into Cisco’s cable TV unit (the former Scientific Atlanta).
For the current quarter ending in October, which will consolidate Optium results only part way through the quarter, the company is forecast combined sales of $156 million to $167 million. That’s ahead of the average $144 million estimate, though estimates are probably still being refined for the combination. The sales estimate range is actually from $123 million to $159 million.