Agilent Technologies: Q1 Profit Rises 9%, but Full-Year Outlook Is Lowered

Life science, diagnostic, and electronic instrumentation and measurement company Agilent Technologies (NYSE: A  ) reported modest net income expansion after the closing bell this evening, but disappointed investors by lowering its full-year top- and bottom-line guidance.

For the first-quarter, Agilent reported flat year-over-year revenue of $1.68 billion. Revenue was aided by a 5% improvement in life sciences revenue, marking strong growth diagnostic and clinical study programs for biopharmaceutical companies, as well as a 6% jump in chemical analysis revenue. Hurting sales was a 7% decline in its electronic measurement segment, as weaker aerospace and defense spending, likely spurred by tighter federal spending, negatively affected orders.

Overall net income for the quarter expanded 9%, to $195 million from $179 million in the prior year. Excluding one-time costs, adjusted net income totaled $226 million, or $0.67 per share. Agilent also managed to generate $194 million in cash from operations in the first quarter as its expenses were also flat at $1.46 billion compared to last year.

Agilent also notes that its plan to split into two separate companies – an electronic measurement company and a life sciences/diagnostics company -- appears to be on track to occur in November.

Looking ahead, Agilent is forecasting full-year revenue to range between $6.9 billion and $7.1 billion, representing growth of 3% at the midpoint compared to 2013, with EPS in the range of $2.96 to $3.16. For context, Agilent reported full-year EPS of $2.10 in 2013. The concern with this guidance is that, in November, Agilent had guided toward $6.95 billion-$7.15 billion in revenue on $3.03-$3.33 in EPS.

Shares were down 6% in after hours at the time of this writing.


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