Tesla (TSLA) Misses Second Quarter 2013 Forecast On Profit, But Beat Revenue, Profit Margin Expectations

on August 07 2013 4:29 PM

[Update 5:40 p.m. EDT] Tesla's stock climbed 12.9 percent to $134.23 between 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. in after-hours trading Wednesday following the company's second-quarter earnings announcement. Prior to that on Wednesday the price lost 5.57 percent. 

“The increasing rate of production and margin are even more compelling than the overall revenue and profit numbers," said Karl Brauer, senior analyst at automotive pricing and information provider Kelley Blue Book. "Tesla has clearly found an unmet market niche that's capable of supporting the company, at least in the near term. The automaker's long-term goal of producing a high-volume, low-cost electric car is the next big hurdle."

Click here to read the advance to the earnings report where analysts discuss Tesla's recent developments, the issue of California carbon credits and why some consider the stock overheated. 

Original story begins here:

Tesla Motors Inc. (NASDAQ:TSLA) reported on Wednesday after markets closed that it lost $30.5 million, or 26 cents per share, on $401.5 million in revenue in its second quarter ending June 30.

The company said it delivered 5 percent more vehicles in the second quarter to a record 5,150 Model S sedans, up from about 4,750 in the first quarter, putting it in line to meet the target of  20,000-plus units in 2013. 

Investors appeared to shrug off the lower-than-expected earnings, choosing to look at sales, revenue growth and profit. Shares were up more than 13 percent to $134.23 in after-market trading after the price shed nearly 6 percent prior to the earnings announcement. 

Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters had expected a smaller loss, of $18.8 million, or 17 cents per share, on $383 million in revenue.

Tesla did, however, narrow its losses from the same quarter last year, when it lost $79 million on a meager $30 million in revenue.

The company said profits are “not our primary mission,” and played up its increase in unit sales and profit margins.

The maker of the Model S luxury electric sedan said it widened its gross margin to 22 percent (including the sale of California carbon credits; excluding them the margin was 13.5 percent) despite significant reductions in the number of carbon credits the company was able to sell, which helped it turn its first profit in the first quarter. The forecast was for margins to widen to 18.8 percent, including the carbon credit sales. 

CORRECTION: The original story said Tesla sold 8 percent more vehicles in the second quarter. According to the earnings release, "deliveries increased by 5 percent from Q1," or 5,150 more cars. For that figure to be accurate, the company would have had to deliver 4,905 cars in the first quarter, above the commonly reported estimate of about 4,750. Tesla does not report monthly sales like other auto makers. The company said Wednesday it has increased production to "almost 500 a week," but that includes "vehicles for use as service loaners" and cars destined for Europe to sell in the third quarter.

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