Investors sent shares of Sun Microsystems, Inc.(Nasdaq: SUNW) down more than 11 percent in Wednesday trading after the technology companyâ€™s third quarter report late yesterday indicated lower-than-expected sales.
The information and network technology provider said its net income was $67 million, or 2 cents per share, excluding one time charges and other expensesThe figure was slightly higher than expectations of 1 cent, according to a poll of analysts by Thomson Financial. . In the year-ago period, the firm posted a loss of $217 million.
Sales, which rose 3 percent to $3.28 billion, missed expectations of $3.42 billion.
Shares in Sun were down 71 cents, or 11.95 percent to $5.23 in Wednesday trading.
Chief Executive Jonathan Schwartz said on a conference call that the company's sales growth rate was dampened by a poor performance in the U.S. and U.K., especially during the month of March.
There were more ugly parts to Sunâ€™s miss than there were positives, wrote Goldman Sachs analyst Laura Conigliaro in a note to clients. Revenue was lower than expected in Sunâ€™s key server business. At the same time operating expenses, bloated by currency, made matters worse, as did Sunâ€™s retreat into less transparency on its conference call last night,
Schwartz, who became CEO a year ago, has implemented a number of job cuts in that time. The moves helped the company improve its gross margin to 44.5 percent compared to 43 percent last year.
Conigliaro expects Sun's current miss to result in more job cuts and cause the firm to reassess its current operating expenses.
Although Sunâ€™s headcount cuts are bound to be of the â€œtargeted and smallerâ€ variety, they provide enough room to get Sun to 10 percent operating margins by fiscal 2009 even on low revenue growth, she said.