Avanex's Market is Growing, Will Bookings Follow?

| About: Avanex Corp. (AVNX)
This article is now exclusive for PRO subscribers.

In yesterday's conference call with analysts, Avanex (AVNX) CEO Jo Major notes that long haul and metro growth will be up to 20% this year. That won't necessarily, according to Major, translate into a similar increase in bookings for the company:

We see the long haul and metro markets growing in the 15% to 20% range this year with metro growth modestly stronger than that of long haul. We now see substantial opportunities in the sub-marine market firming up for calendar year 2007. In particular, the Trans-Pacific Express, or TPE, will represent a total available market for optical components of $30 million to $40 million in revenue in the first half of calendar '07. We believe that the timeframe of this project is reasonably solid. Other exciting projects such as the Asia-American Gateway, or AAG, have also been announced but do not appear to be happening within our 2007 fiscal year.

We have traditionally been one of two premier vendors in this market. We've continued to invest in this market and we believe that we are well positioned to be the number one or number two player in this component market as it re-emerges at the component level.

In general, we are optimistic about our markets and the overall trends that we are seeing. While we've previously stated that we would look into adjacent markets for expansion, based on the current strength of the optical hardware telecom market, both in the near-term and long-term, we currently believe that the best strategy for our company's growth is to capitalize on the current trends in our existing markets. Therefore, in fiscal 2008, we will focus on optical hardware for the telecommunications industry.

Later in the call, in response to a question from Cowen's John Anthony:

John Anthony - Cowen & Co.

What gives you the conviction that your bookings are going to continue to increase through the end of the year?

Jo Major

Hi, John. I actually didn't say that our bookings would continue to increase throughout the rest of the year. I'll just make sure that I'm clear about what I did say. I did say that we see the markets growing and we’re not unusual in that regard. Most of the analysts out there that are looking at this market see growth on the 15% to 20% range this year so I think we're simply in line with people there.

Our bookings have been strong historically so I'll reiterate what I said. For a couple quarters now I've said that what limits our ability to get revenue is our capacity, that there's lots of demands for the product and our big challenge is gearing up our supply chain and gearing up our factories to go get that revenue, but I did stop short of saying that we'll see bookings increase throughout the rest of the year.

The other thing that I said on this call was, you know, we want to go publicly on record that the sub-marine market has been coming back, but those programs have primarily pulled out of inventory as opposed to new product for us. We believe that the supply chain, that the inventory levels of our customers are now deleted and we see real signs that there are programs that will turn the sub-marine program on in the coming year and we will absolutely positively do everything possible to be the number one or number two player in that market.