Why Iridium Communications Inc. Soared Today

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 satellite communications technologist Iridium Communications (NASDAQ: IRDM  ) surged 11% today after its quarterly results topped Wall Street expectations.

So what: The stock had pulled back over the past month on nervousness about the quarter, but today's market-topping results -- first-quarter earnings per share of $0.19 on revenue growth of 10% -- are quickly easing that tension. In fact, Iridium's total billable subscribers increased a solid 9% over the year-ago period to 674,000, giving analysts some decent visibility into its near-term growth trajectory.

Now what: For the full year, management still sees service revenue growth of 2%-4% and operational EBITDA of $205 million-$215 million. "We're encouraged by our solid start to 2014, and are poised to build on this momentum with exciting new products like Iridium GO!TM, by capitalizing on opportunities in our maritime business, and further penetrating the heavy equipment OEM segment in the M2M market," said CEO Matt Desch in the earnings press release. More important, with Iridium shares still off about 20% from their 52-week high and trading at a cheapish forward P/E of 8, there seems to be plenty of upside left to buy into those prospects. 

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