Friday, March 19, 2010

"UPDATE: SunPower 4Q Falls 70%; Firm Ends Accounting Probe" (SPWRA; SPWRB)

UPDATE II: "Analyst Roundup: SunPower (SPWRA; SPWRB)"
"SunPower Maintained at Outperform at Cowen - Cut EPS Forecasts (SPWRA)"
Original post:
In a December 1 post "Pacific Crest's Bachman on SunPower - Buy Equal Parts SPWRA and Antacid (SPWRA)" my comment was:
Although it popped yesterday and is up another dollar today, Sunpower has been a miserable performer the last few months, what with the accounting issues. I don't think it has washed out quite yet and see no reason to chase it. Last trade $21.68, up $1.01....
I don't see much reason to bid the thing up 3 1/2 months later.
After the earnings came out yesterday the stock traded down as much as 10% after-hours. I saw it at $19.79.
From the Wall Street Journal:
SunPower Corp.'s (SPWRA) fourth-quarter profit fell 70%, hurt by sagging margins, though sales grew in both the solar-panel maker's systems and component businesses.

The company also restated financial results due to an internal accounting probe of its Philippines operations.

SunPower shares, which have fallen more than 20% since the company announced its accounting troubles in November, tumbled 9.9%, to $19.74 in after-hours trading, hurt by a weaker-than-expected first-quarter outlook.

Chief Financial Officer Dennis Arriola said that while the SunPower's recent acquisition of SunRay Renewable Energy would provide "more predictable growth in the second half of 2010 and into 2011," because SunPower will be building solar installations instead of selling the panels to third-parties, revenue recognition will shift to the second half of this year.

Part of that revenue shift results from a delay in receiving financing due to the accounting probe. In November, SunPower had warned that it believed certain accounting entries related to its costs of goods sold were misstated. The cumulative impact of the restatement totaled about $33.2 million on a fully reported basis, or a reduction in profit of $16.9 million, excluding the committee's investigation expenses of $3.6 million incurred in the fourth quarter.

The adjustments lowered results by 11 cents a share in 2008 and by 8 cents for the first three quarters of 2009.

SunPower said the restatement had "no impact on the company's net cash position or total cash flows for any period affected," and Chief Executive Tom Werner said it had not lost any banking relationships due to the probe.

But in a change from its earlier stance, SunPower said it may use its balance sheet to help fund projects while it tries to sell them to investors.

This year, SunPower expects full-year earnings of $1.25 to $1.65 a share on revenue of $2 billion to $2.25 billion. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected $1.78 a share on $2.06 billion in revenue.

The company said it expects average panel prices to fall 20% in 2010....MORE