What's happening: Shares of the diabetes device maker Insulet Corp. (NASDAQ:PODD) fell by over 16% today on heavy volume today after releasing unexpectedly weak first-quarter earnings. Per the earnings release, Insulet reported an 11% decrease in total revenue to $61.2 million for the three-month period, compared with $69.2 million in the first quarter of 2014. As a result, the company posted an operating loss of $8.6 million during the quarter.
The Street, by contrast, was expecting revenue to come in closer to $68.3 million and the operating loss to be around $1 million. In short, Insulet missed the mark in a big way in the first quarter, immediately triggering investigations from various law firms.
Why it's happening: Management stated that sales of the OmniPod Insulin Management System were in line with its previous projections. Even so, the company didn't provide much color on why this miss was so large, leaving investors on their own to some degree.
Digging into the numbers, we can see that expenses -- especially administrative and marketing expenses -- jumped markedly during the quarter, relative to a year ago. Specifically, total expenses increased by roughly $7 million year over year, while revenue dropped by nearly $8 million.
Breaking this down further still, we learned that $2.6 million of this uptick in expenses resulted from the recent turnover in management, and the remaining $4 million or so stemmed from higher marketing expenses, compared to a year ago. So the churn in management and higher marketing costs appear to be the main culprits.
Looking ahead, management stated that they are on track to meet their annual guidance of $305 to $320 million in revenue. Although this would require a major upswing in OmniPod sales from current levels, the good news is that the device has been well-received by diabetics for the most part -- evinced by their generally positive reviews.
Given these strong revenue projections going forward, shareholders may want to take a deep breath and give the new management time to execute their business plan before jumping ship, so to speak.
George Budwell has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Insulet. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.