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Agilent's Q1 Revenues Increase 4 Percent

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Agilent Technologies today reported first-quarter revenue growth of 4 percent, led by double-digit increases in sales for its Life Sciences and Chemical Analysis segments.

The Santa Clara, Calif.-based firm brought in total revenues of $1.21 billion for the three-month period ended Jan. 31, 2010, compared to revenues of $1.17 billion for the first quarter of 2009. Agilent beat analysts' consensus estimate for revenues of $1.18 billion for the quarter.

Revenues for its Life Sciences segment were $340 million, up around 10 percent from $309 million for Q1 2009, while revenues for its Chemical Analysis segment increased 13 percent to $244 million from $216 million. The Electronic Measurement segment was a drag on revenue growth with a 2 percent decrease year over year to $629 million from $641 million.

Agilent posted a profit of $79 million, or $.22 per share, up 23 percent from $64 million, or $.18 per share, for Q1 2009. Its adjusted net income — which excludes restructuring and asset impairment charges of $48 million and $10 million of non-cash amortization — was $135 million, or $.38 per share, compared to adjusted net income of $72 million, or $.20 per share, for the comparable period of 2009. The adjusted net income beat analysts' estimate of $.32.

Agilent's R&D spending for the quarter declined 12 percent to $149 million from $169 million, while its SG&A expenses increased 5 percent to $417 million from $396 million.

The firm finished the quarter with $1.55 billion in cash and cash equivalents and $12 million in short-term investments.

"It is still early in the new economic cycle to be confident of future prospects but our orders suggest that the momentum will continue at a moderate pace, with broadening of the recovery across most markets and geographies as the year unfolds," Bill Sullivan, Agilent's president and CEO, said in a statement.

Sullivan added that Agilent expects to report second-quarter revenue growth of between 12 percent and 15 percent year over year and EPS between $.38 and $.42. For full-year 2010, Agilent expects revenue growth of around 10 percent with non-GAAP EPS between $1.65 and $1.70.

The firm is awaiting US clearance for its $1.5 billion acquisition of Varian. The merger was cleared by European regulatory authorities last month, but with conditions, including the sale of product lines accounting for revenues of "under $100 million" in 2009

The partners do not expects US regulators to seek any additional remedies beyond those required in Europe.

In early Friday trade on the New York Stock Exchange, shares of Agilent were up 2 percent at $29.88.

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