Sales from broadband stimulus growth drive Calix's Q4 revenues

Economic uncertainty affected earnings, says CEO
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Calix (NYSE: CALX) reported that Q4 2012 revenues rose 12.5 percent sequentially to $91.4 million but remained flat year-over-year.

The company's Q4 Non-GAAP net income was $2.9 million, or 6 cents per diluted share, an increase of 61.3 percent compared to non-GAAP net income of $1.8 million, or 4 cents per diluted share, for the third quarter of 2012, and a decrease of 22.2 percent compared to non-GAAP net income of $3.7 million, or 8 cents per diluted share, in the fourth quarter of 2011.

During the quarter, Calix narrowed its GAAP losses to $6.6 million or 14 cents per basic and diluted share, compared to a GAAP net loss of $7.1 million, or 15 cents per basic and diluted share, for Q3 2012.

Carl Russo, president and CEO of Calix, said during the earnings call that the company attributes the revenue increase to an uptick in broadband stimulus-related sales.

"Shipments against broadband stimulus orders were once again the primary factor leading to this increase," he said. "Broadband stimulus revenue itself came in at just under 10 percent."

In particular, the vendor also made progress with two of its largest U.S.-based telco customers, CenturyLink (NYSE: CTL) and Frontier (Nasdaq: FTR).

After the company received internal IT certification from CenturyLink in November, Michael Ashby, Calix's CFO, said Calix "shipped to and recorded our first revenue on these products in the fourth quarter."

At Frontier, Calix helped the service provider transition the lines it purchased from Verizon to support broadband in its rural areas. Ashby said Calix expects to grow its business with Frontier.

Another area of growth was international revenue, which rose sequentially 6 percent. To bolster its ability to serve international opportunities, Calix purchased Ericsson's last mile access assets in August and signed a reseller agreement with the Sweden-based company.

"Our international Tier 1 business which is predominantly through Ericsson is as I mentioned off to a slow start but we are confident that it will grow throughout the year," said Ashby.

Issues that have plagued Calix and other access providers that serve the Tier 2 and Tier 3 service provider segments include economic uncertainty and lack of clarity around the FCC's USF/ICC reforms and the Connect America fund.

"The macroeconomic concerns impacted capital projects in the Tier 1 service providers and at some of the Tier 2 service providers," Russo said. "Furthermore, Tier 3 U.S. service providers were concerned over the USF/ICC reform and the implementation of the Connect America Fund. All of this led to uncertainty and overall weakness in the industry."

Calix's shares were listed at $8.51 at the close of trading Tuesday on the New York Stock Exchange.

For more:
- see the release
- here's the earnings transcript (sub. req.)

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