Why it's happening: To his credit, Cimpress CEO Robert Keane did release a lengthy letter to investors (opens PDF) along with today's earnings press release. In it, he outlines progress made so far in plans the company unveiled last year to generate shareholder value by becoming the "world leader in mass customization," maximizing intrinsic value per share, repositioning the Vistaprint value proposition to be more attractive to consumers, launching a multi-year project to build a software-based mass customization platform, and pursuing mergers and acquisitions to contribute to and benefit that platform.
However, Keane also notes the company will not provide forward guidance beyond reviewing "how we think about value creation" and applying those concepts to the business, Cimpress' "general view of potential organic growth rates," and its discretionary growth spending plans for the upcoming fiscal year.
Consequently, Keane added, starting with the current quarter Cimpress "will stop reporting many of the operational metrics we have previously reported on because, given the changes we have made over the relatively recent past, they are no longer relevant to how our top management and supervisory board views and measures our business. We understand that these changes may require a transition in modeling and even in mind-set for some investors and analysts who are used to having the type of forward-looking guidance and retrospective operating metrics that we provided previously."
That's fair enough. Though our fickle market is notoriously averse to change, it doesn't sound like this newer, more-vague guidance is a result of underlying problems with the business. What's more, Cimpress promised to review and explain its thinking and contents of the letter in more detail during its upcoming investor day. In the end, if and when they convince investors this is truly the best way to maximize long-term intrinsic value per share, I won't be the least bit surprised if today's pullback doesn't last.