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Illumina Lowers Q2 Revenue Forecast Due to Order Delays

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Illumina announced after the close of the market Wednesday that it expects to report second-quarter revenue of approximately $161 million instead of between $168 million and $173 million as previously forecast.

The company attributed the lower-than-expected revenue to a "shortfall" in its array business due to several factors: customers delaying the start of genome-wide association studies "in anticipation of new, rare variant content arrays;" the impact of reduced foundation funding in a few "key accounts;" and order delays related to stimulus funding under the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act.

The updated forecast still represents a 15 percent year-over-year increase compared to the second quarter of 2008, in which the firm brought in revenues of $140.2 million.

Illumina said that even though ARRA also caused order delays in its sequencing business, it still saw "significant sequential growth" in sequencing, though it was insufficient to offset the decline in the array business.

The company said it expects the stimulus funding to have a "significant positive impact" on its business in the fourth quarter and in 2010, but noted that the ARRA program has caused short-term order delays "as customers wait to learn whether and to what extent they will receive incremental funding."

Illumina added that this uncertainty has reduced its revenue by approximately $10 million to $15 million in the first half of the year "and has created uncertainty in our Q3 forecast."

Nevertheless, the company said that due to the stimulus-driven rebound it expects in the fourth quarter, offset by the "weakness" in the array business, it is "resetting" its full-year 2009 revenue outlook to the original range it provided at the beginning of the year of $690 million to $720 million.

In April, the company raised its full-year guidance to a range of $700 million to $720 million, based on the strength of its first-quarter results, in which its revenues increased 36 percent year-over-year to $165.8 million.

The news sent the company's shares down around 11 percent at $33.99 in early Thurday trade on the Nasdaq.

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