It's been a little more than a week since digital mapper Navteq (NYSE:NVT) -- and by my count, about 15 trillion other companies -- reported its fiscal 2006 earnings numbers, and I'm just now getting around to writing about the company. Such is the madness that we call earnings season. But on to the analysis.

On Thursday, Feb. 8, after the market close, Navteq did indeed report its numbers for fiscal fourth-quarter and full-year 2006. And if you've been watching the stock's performance since then, you already know: Wall Street was not pleased. What you may not know is why -- and that's what we'll discuss today.

On the surface, there was very little to quibble with over Navteq's Q4 performance. The company "beat earnings" and "beat revenue," right on cue. For the year, this provider of electronic maps to everyone from Ford (NYSE:F) and GM (NYSE:GM) to Dell (NASDAQ:DELL) and Garmin (NASDAQ:GRMN) saw its sales rise 17% and operating income 14%, even as net profits plummeted 36% in the absence of last year's tax benefit-inspired boost. Back out that one-time benefit, however, and you'd be looking at a firm that grew its net 22% year over year, or comfortably ahead of sales growth -- indicative of expanding profit margins.

Trends ...
Two trends in sales caught my eye in the earnings report. According to Navteq, foreign sales growth caught fire in the fourth quarter, rising 34% year over year, as compared to the 14% foreign sales growth posted in fiscal 2006 overall. In the Americas, however, the opposite came to pass. Fourth-quarter sales were up a mere 17%, slowing significantly from the 25% growth posted over the course of the full year. But honestly, I don't see how these trends could have scared investors into selling. Foreign sales already make up more than 62% of Navteq's sales. The fact that its biggest revenue stream is the one getting bigger, faster, seems to me a plus rather than a minus.

... and troubles
More worrisome is Navteq's prediction that it will average 100 million diluted shares next year. That suggests annual dilution of 4.5%, breaking the 3% ceiling I like to see. Moreover, the firm's suggestion that expensing these options will cost it $18 million in profits under GAAP means that out of every $8 in profits this firm earns, it skims off a buck and hands it to corporate insiders. As an outside investor, that would worry me very much. Maybe even enough to sell an otherwise fine business.

What were we hoping to see out of Navteq? Here's a hint -- significant options dilution wasn't on the wish list. See the complete forecast in "Foolish Forecast: Unfolding Navteq."

Dell and Garmin are Stock Advisor recommendations. Dell is also an Inside Value pick.

Fool contributor Rich Smith does not own shares of any company named above. The Fool has a disclosure policy.