Why ViaSat Shares Were Sent Into Outer Space

Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of ViaSat (NASDAQ: VSAT  ) , a provider of satellite and wireless networking technology for enterprises and governments, gained as much as 20% after the company reported fourth-quarter earnings results.

So what: For the quarter, ViaSat delivered a 28% increase in revenue to $308.7 million as it reversed a year-ago adjusted loss of $0.01 per share into an adjusted profit of $0.19 per share. ViaSat noted gains across all business segments during the quarter despite tightening government budgets, and reported $227.1 million in new contract awards. Wall Street analysts had only been projecting a $0.02 per share profit on revenue of $286 million.

Now what: While it was certainly a good quarter and it's great news that ViaSat has returned to profitability, I can't help but remain concerned that nearly half of the company's revenue comes from its government segment. Its government division certainly delivers higher profitability than either the commercial or satellite operations, but it's far too susceptible to fluctuations in orders because of austerity measures in Europe and the sequester in the U.S. At roughly 80 times forward earnings, this isn't a company that looks particularly intriguing from a value perspective.

Craving more input? Start by adding ViaSat to your free and personalized watchlist so you can keep up on the latest news with the company.

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