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Why Imperva Inc Shares Temporarily Dropped 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 Imperva Inc (NYSE: IMPV  ) fell by as much as 10% in Friday's early trading, then recovered to close down just 2% after the enterprise security specialist released first-quarter results.

So what: Remember, Imperva stock already plunged more than 40% when it released disappointing preliminary numbers three weeks ago, so today's report shouldn't have contained any big surprises.

Still, quarterly sales came in at $31.5 million, which translated to an adjusted net loss of $9.1 million, or $0.36 per share. For reference, that's at the top end of Imperva's freshly revised revenue range, while its per share net loss turned out to be better than the $0.44 to $0.40 range of which it warned last month.

For the current quarter, Imperva expects revenue of $33 million to $36 million, with an adjusted per share loss of $0.47 to $0.37. By comparison, analysts were looking for a Q2 loss of $0.32 per share on sales of $36.07 million.

Finally, for the full year 2014, Imperva sees revenue in the range of $150 million to $160 million, which should result in an adjusted per share net loss of $1.25 to $0.94. Analysts' latest models called for 2014 sales and earnings of $157.8 million and $1.06 per share, respectively.

Now what: Again, no big surprises here, but Imperva's previous big drop and slightly better-than-expected quarterly loss explains why shares rebounded off this morning's lows. Imperva also has no debt and over $105 millon in cash and short-term investments on its balance sheet, and management insists it's in position to reaccelerate growth over the longer term.

Even so, it's hard to get excited about a company hemorrhaging cash and expecting to generate negative cash flows from operations this year. For now, until I see more progress toward sustained profitability, I'm perfectly happy watching Imperva from the sidelines.

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Steve Symington

Technology and consumer goods specialist for the Fool. Steve looks for responsible businesses which positively shape our lives. Then, he invests accordingly. Enjoy his work? Connect with him on Twitter & Facebook so you don't miss a thing.

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