Optical/IP Networks

Cisco Disappoints With Q1

Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) shares sagged in early after-hours trading after the company's first-quarter earnings didn't match investor expectations.

For its first quarter, which ended October 30, Cisco reported net income of $1.4 billion, or 21 cents per share, on revenues of $6 billion, compared with net income of $1.4 billion, 20 cents per share, on revenues of $5.9 billion for the previous quarter.

For its first quarter last year, Cisco reported net income of $1.1 billion, 15 cents per share, on revenues of $5.1 billion.

Taking away the roundoff factor, Cisco's revenues were $5.97 billion, barely missing analysts' expectations of $6.02 billion. More important, net income of 21 cents per share matched analysts' average estimates as reported by Reuters Research -- but investors have grown accustomed to Cisco beating estimates by a penny.

Not surprisingly, Cisco stock took an immediate turn south in after-hours trading. Early trades were down as much as 51 cents (3%) from today's closing price of $19.75. It probably doesn't help that Cisco's stock had run up recently, increasing 9 percent since October 25.

Cisco had warned that the first quarter ending October 27 would be weak, with revenues growing by 2 percent at most (see Cisco's Q4 Not All Smiles).

Chambers added that second-quarter revenues would be up just 1 to 3 percent, or $6.03 billion to $6.15 billion. Prior to today's earnings announcement, analysts were anticipating $6.21 billion in revenues for the January quarter, according to Reuters.

The guidance percentages didn't surprise everyone, however. Analyst Mark Sue of RBC Capital Markets had predicted Cisco's "1-to-3 percent" guidance range this morning, in a note previewing Cisco's call.

Cisco did drop some glum notes during the call. The book-to-bill ratio for Cisco's first quarter was less than 1.0, an indication that orders slowed down. Chambers also noted "a lot of lumpiness in our router business," citing possible reasons including increased Asian competition and the introduction of new products including the CRS-1 core router (see Cisco Unveils the HFR).

Cisco's board also approved a $10 billion addition to the company's stock buyback program, which has been ongoing since 2001. The buyback program now measures $25 billion total, about $15 million of which remains unspent.

— Craig Matsumoto, Senior Editor, Light Reading

For more info on the state of industry financials, check out the coming Light Reading Live! event:

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gumbydammit 12/5/2012 | 1:06:15 AM
re: Cisco Disappoints With Q1 ....why this report is so disappointing?

We're expecting 20% Y/Y growth *and* we're disappointed when they only accomplish that?

Now thats a disappointment I wish we would see more of.
change_is_good 12/5/2012 | 1:06:11 AM
re: Cisco Disappoints With Q1 >> The 4 year average show 0% Growth.

what $20b networking company has shown significant growth over the last 4 years?

yea, they have been beat down, but i think there is some upside. they are not a half a trillion dollar company like the past but they are still a player.

what networking company is not overvalued?

slayer666 12/5/2012 | 1:06:11 AM
re: Cisco Disappoints With Q1 The fact is Cisco revenues are flat...2001 they were $22B slipping to $19B in 2002,2003, and are now at $22B again...The 4 year average show 0% Growth. Their income has grown but you can only chop expenses for so long before impact new product delivery...They have about $25B cash if you look at Assests-Liabilities...but if they don't show some top line growth, you have to say they are not worth $133B market cap!

2x to 3x revenue if you are lucky!
slayer666 12/5/2012 | 1:06:10 AM
re: Cisco Disappoints With Q1 Understood...but, if the days of 50-100% growth are not coming back, then the market cap gets Tad-Tad...(that's Chop-chop with a machete)accordingly.

Just my 2 billion cents...
dwdm 12/5/2012 | 1:06:09 AM
re: Cisco Disappoints With Q1 I agree that they are doing really well. They have a ton of cash, their sales look very healthy, no debt etc.. however the market needs to see Cisco back in the 20-30% growth quarter over quarter vs year over year. I think the key for Cisco is going to be markets that are outside the US going forward. Having about half of your business just from the US, means you can grow a lot more outside. That is just my opinion..
technoboy 12/5/2012 | 1:06:07 AM
re: Cisco Disappoints With Q1 Cisco is not now nor were they ever worth what their market cap states. They are not growing in the key strategic markets enough to offset the increased competition in their core business. They will not take on a large merger while Chambers is in charge so they will continue to be what they have always been. A decent networking company that does not innovate but markets better than most companies. Like the other previous post stated 0% growth since 01. Sounds like a major change is required.
freetoair 12/5/2012 | 1:06:05 AM
re: Cisco Disappoints With Q1 Techno makes a good observation:

"They are not growing in the key strategic markets enough to offset the increased competition in their core business."

I would suggest that is due to thier total lack of technology innovation and engineering leadership.

i.e. No New Products or Markets.

Relying on the core business is great - but sooner or later it just becomes a commodity. As other posters noted this is happening.

santalk2000 12/5/2012 | 1:06:04 AM
re: Cisco Disappoints With Q1 I don't agree with you.
I think this is one of the cheap (considering profitability).

Revenue ForPE MarketCap
Microsoft Corp 37.81B 21.42 323.45B
Intel Corp 33.35B 20.79 145.93B
Cisco Systems 22.04B 19.55 131.35B
Dell Inc 45.38B 24.46 93.45B

Coca-Cola Co (Coke) 21.88B 19.83 99.78B
Gillette Co 9.99B 23.12 43.16B
American Express 28.44B 17.74 68.57B
can go on...
DoTheMath 12/5/2012 | 1:06:04 AM
re: Cisco Disappoints With Q1 If they are talking about Asian competition, things must be getting a bit dicey on the pricing front. Cisco gear is solid, but way overpriced. Gross margin of 67% is hard to justify even in a high innovation business, and Cisco is not exactly a high innovation business. They have relied on outstanding execution, and major strategic mistakes by the competition.

We can count on Cisco executing well, but the environment will become increasingly price-competitive. Margin pressure will become severe. Think of what happened to EMC to understand what potentially can happen to Cisco. EMC has essentially reinvented itself as a software company going after the likes of Veritas. But they went through serious pain and many company-altering acquisitions to get there.

Given all these, I believe Cisco's stock is still overvalued.
fabius 12/5/2012 | 1:06:00 AM
re: Cisco Disappoints With Q1 Cisco is definitly lacking the innovating spirit and they are not able to recognize the need of it.
They think you can just buy the innovation by acquiring companies but what they do not understand is that innovation is a state of mind that you must cultivate in order to obtain results.
Cisco is acquiring innovative companies imposing the Cisco way and destroying all the innovation push.
Until IOS is generating revenues they have their point ......
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