April 4, 2007
Another day, another miss. This time, Motley Fool Rule Breakers pick TASER (Nasdaq: TASR ) announced that its record $15 million in first-quarter revenue fell short of estimates because of delays in three large orders.
Does that sound awful? Sure. Trouble is, it's not really news. Allow me to quote from the risks section of TASER's latest 10-K annual report:
"Most of our end-user customers are government agencies. These agencies often do not set their own budgets and therefore have little control over the amount of money they can spend. In addition, these agencies experience political pressure that may dictate the manner in which they spend money. As a result, even if an agency wants to acquire our products, it may be unable to purchase them due to budgetary or political constraints. Some government agency orders may also be canceled or substantially delayed due to budgetary, political or other scheduling delays which frequently occur in connection with the acquisition of products by such agencies." [Emphasis mine.]
Here's my point. Anyone who was stunned by these delays either (a) doesn't know the business very well or (b) wasn't paying attention. Like Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT ) , Boeing (NYSE: BA ) , Northrop Grumman (NYSE: NOC ) , and Raytheon (NYSE: RTN ) , TASER is a defense contractor. It will profit most when the governments with which it does business are ready to spend money.
Have a different take? Let me know.
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Fool contributor Tim Beyers has never been stunned by a TASER and doesn't plan to be, either. Tim didn't own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article at the time of publication. The Motley Fool's disclosure policy was shocked -- SHOCKED -- to read that Keith Richards had once snorted his father's ashes. Is there anything he hasn't snorted?