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Equinix Turns In Another Good Quarter and Raises Guidance Again

By Beth McKenna - Updated Aug 7, 2019 at 1:45AM

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In the second quarter, the world's largest operator of data centers grew revenue and AFFO per share by 10% and 9%, respectively, year over year.

Equinix (EQIX 1.25%) reported solid second-quarter 2019 results after the market closed on July 31.

The report pleased investors, who sent shares to a gain of 4.1% the next day. The stock has returned 47% in 2019 through Aug. 5, easily outpacing the S&P 500's 14.8% return.

Here's how the quarter worked out for the data center operator -- which is organized as a real estate investment trust (REIT) -- and its investors.

Equinix's results: The raw numbers

Metric

Q2 2019

Q2 2018

Change

Revenue

$1.39 billion

$1.26 billion

10% (also 10% on a normalized and constant-currency basis)

Operating income

$291.8 million

$215.0 million

36%

Net income

$143.9 million

$67.6 million

113%

Earnings per share (EPS)

$1.69

$0.85

99%

Adjusted funds from operations (AFFO)*

$497.6 million

$428.1 million

16%

AFFO per share

$5.87

$5.37

9%

Data source: Equinix. *Adjusted funds from operations (AFFO) is a closely watched metric for companies organized as real estate investment trusts, or REITs. It's akin to "earnings" for REITs.

For context (though long-term investors shouldn't give too much importance to Wall Street's near-term estimates), analysts were looking for AFFO per share of $5.57, so Equinix comfortably beat the consensus estimate.

Interior of a data center showing servers around perimeter of room.

The SP2 data center in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Image source: Equinix.

What happened with Equinix in the quarter?

  • Recurring revenue, consisting primarily of colocation, interconnection, and managed services revenue, rose 10% over the year-ago period to $1.31 billion. Nonrecurring revenue increased 6% to $78.9 million.
  • The company launched Network Edge services, "enabling companies to deploy virtualized services such as routers, firewalls and load balancers from industry-leading vendors including Cisco [Systems], Juniper Networks and Palo Alto Networks," according to the earnings release.
  • It signed a $1.0 billion-plus joint venture with GIC, Singapore's sovereign wealth fund, which is expected to close in the third quarter. The JV is "to develop and operate xScale data centers in Amsterdam, Frankfurt, London and Paris," which "will serve the unique core workload deployment needs of a targeted group of hyperscale companies, including the world's largest cloud service providers."
  • All of Equinix's ratings were upgraded to investment grade by Fitch Ratings.
  • Customer deployments across multiple regions increased to 73% of total recurring revenue, which the company touts as "demonstrating the value of Equinix's global platform."
  • Equinix now counts as customers more than half of the Fortune 500.

What management had to say

Here's what Equinix CEO Charles Meyers had to say in the earnings release:

Equinix had another strong quarter, as it continues to deliver distinctive and durable value for customers pursuing their digital transformation initiatives. As a variety of trends are making global businesses think differently about their infrastructure, Equinix is responding by both investing across its traditional strengths and layering in incremental capabilities that make it an easier-to-use, more accessible global platform. We see a large and expanding market opportunity, and we believe Equinix is uniquely positioned to capture this opportunity as customers prioritize digital transformation and adopt hybrid and multicloud as their architecture of choice.

Looking ahead

Equinix turned in another good quarter.

The company issued third-quarter revenue guidance and increased its previously issued full-year 2019 revenue and AFFO outlook, due mainly to better-than-expected business performance so far in the year.

Metric

Q3 2019 Guidance

Projected Year-Over-Year Change

Previous Full-Year 2019 Guidance

Current Full-Year 2019 Guidance

Projected Year-Over-Year Change

Revenue

$1.399 billion to $1.409 billion

9% to 10% $5.545 billion to $5.595 billion $5.565 billion to $5.595 billion

10% (at the midpoint, 9% on a normalized and constant-currency basis)

AFFO

N/A

N/A

$1.880 billion to $1.910 billion

$1.910 billion to $1.930 billion

15% to 16% (13% to 14% on a normalized and constant-currency basis)

Data source: Equinix.

In 2019, the company expects AFFO per share in the range of $22.57 to $22.81, a 9% to 10% (8% to 9% on a normalized and constant currency basis) increase over 2018.

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