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Agilent Q3 Revenues Flat

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Agilent Technologies said after the close of the market on Monday that its fiscal third quarter revenues were flat but edged out the consensus Wall Street estimate. 

For the three months ended July 31, the firm posted $1.01 billion in total revenues, the same as the year-ago quarter, but just above the analysts' average estimate of $1 billion. On a core basis, revenues grew 9 percent.  

Orders in Q3 2015 were down about 6 percent year over year to $953 million from $1.02 billion. 

The firm's Diagnostics and Genomics Group revenues were flat year over year at $167 million with continued growth across all its businesses, Agilent said. On a conference call after the release of the company's financial results, Agilent President and CEO Mike McMullen said in Q3, that group completed its acquisition of software firm Cartagenia. It also released updated gene expression microarray tools, as well as new target enrichment solutions for disease research based on next-generation sequencing, "which will address current limitations in exome sequencing," he said. 

Meantime, the Life Sciences and Applied Markets Group posted a 1 percent increase in revenues to $511 million, driven by growth in the pharma, environmental, and forensic markets. The Agilent CrossLab Group was flat year over year with $336 million in revenues. 

During Q3 Agilent also resolved issues surrounding the firm's new Americas logistics center, which resulted in about $30 million in delayed revenues in Q2. Agilent CFO Didier Hirsch said on the call that about half of the $30 million was recovered in Q3. The remaining $15 million was not recovered, which Hirsch attributed to "a new normal. What that means is we have orders coming later in the quarter and shipment terms being slightly extended versus what we are used to." 

In February, the firm launched a restructuring program and a multiyear "Agile Agilent" program to reengineer the company "to be more nimble, efficient, and customer-focused." McMullen said that through the first three quarters of FY 2015, $35 million of the expected $50 million in gross savings for the year have been achieved. 

Lastly, the firm bought back $99 million of its stock in the third quarter and plans to buy back another $98 million in Q4, company officials said. 

Agilent recorded a profit of $103 million, or $.31 per share, in the recently completed quarter, compared to a profit of $147 million, or $.43 per share, a year ago. On a non-GAAP basis, EPS of $.44 beat the consensus Wall Street estimate of $.41.  

Agilent trimmed its R&D spending 8 percent year over year to $79 million from $86 million, while its SG&A costs rose 2 percent to $290 million from $285 million. 

Agilent finished the quarter with $2.08 billion in cash and cash equivalents. 

For its fiscal fourth quarter, the firm provided revenue guidance in the range of $1.03 billion to $1.05 billion, and non-GAAP EPS guidance of $.45 to $.49. 

For fiscal full-year 2015, it said that revenue is anticipated to be in the range of $4.03 billion to $4.05 billion. Non-GAAP EPS is expected to be between $1.68 and $1.72. Agilent previously said that revenues for the year were expected to be between $4.05 billion and $4.11 billion with non-GASP EPS in the range of $1.67 to $1.73.