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Why Appian Stock Sank Today

By Evan Niu, CFA - May 7, 2021 at 12:28PM

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The automation technology provider reported first-quarter results but the outlook was a disappointment.

What happened

Shares of Appian (APPN -0.46%) sank by as much as 12% today after the company reported first-quarter earnings. The results were ahead of expectations, but guidance was lacking. As of 12 p.m. EDT, the stock had somewhat recovered and was down just 4%.

So what

Revenue in the first quarter was $88.9 million, beating the consensus estimate of $82.7 million. That resulted in an adjusted net loss per share of $0.06, which was better than the $0.14 per share in adjusted net losses that Wall Street analysts were modeling for. The company, which operates a low-code automation technology platform, reported adjusted EBITDA of approximately $400,000.

Red stock chart going down

Image source: Getty Images.

"Once again, we exceeded our guidance, grew cloud subscription revenue by 38%, and set a new high mark for gross profit margin," CEO Matt Calkins said in a statement. "Appian leads in unifying the low-code automation market and providing agility to our customers."

Now what

Guidance for the second quarter calls for revenue in the range of $77 million to $78 million, which is shy of the $83.8 million in sales that analysts are looking for. That should result in an adjusted net loss per share of $0.23 to $0.26, which is more red ink than the consensus estimate of $0.16 per share in adjusted net losses.

For the full year 2021, revenue is forecast at $353 million to $355 million with an adjusted net loss per share of $0.65 to $0.68. Compare that outlook to the Street's view of $354.3 million in sales and an adjusted net loss per share of $0.57.

Evan Niu, CFA has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Appian. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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