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iRobot Corporation Rides U.S. Growth to a Great Quarter

By Steve Symington - Apr 27, 2016 at 3:33PM

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Now free of its defense and security business, iRobot is solidifying its leadership in home robots.

iRobot has seen an "overwhelmingly positive response" to its new Braava jet floor mopping robot, IMAGE SOURCE: IROBOT CORPORATION

iRobot Corporation (IRBT 4.64%) announced solid first-quarter results Tuesday after the market close, and the market rewarded the home-robot specialist for its efforts, with shares up as much as 9.8% in Wednesday's early trading. Let's take a closer look at what iRobot accomplished in its latest quarter:

iRobot results: The raw numbers


Q1 2016 Actuals

Q1 2015 Actuals

Growth (YOY)


$130.8 million

$118 million


Net Income

$3.9 million

$4.8 million


Earnings per Share




Data source: iRobot Corporation.

What happened with iRobot this quarter?

  • Adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA) rose 7.6% year over year, to $14.1 million.
  • These results were largely ahead of guidance, which called for Q1 revenue of $125 million to $135 million, EPS ranging from a loss of $0.03 per share to net income of $0.04 per share, and adjusted EBITDA of $8 million to $11 million.
  • Home Robot revenue grew 14.9% year over year, to $127.7 million, including:
    • 55.5% year-over-year growth in domestic home-robot sales, to $63.2 million, based on continued momentum for the new Roomba 980, and an "overwhelmingly positive response" to the recently launched Braava jet floor-mopping robot. In fact, Braava jet achieved iRobot's highest day-one unit sales in company history.
    • An 8.4% decline in international home-robot sales, to $64.5 million, in line with expectations, given distributor order timing in the EMEA region. Japan achieved a "small" increase year over year given successful new marketing programs in the country.
  • Successful marketing campaign in Q4 resulted in year-over-year sell-through of more than 70%, causing U.S. retailers to restock shelves ahead of expectations in Q1. 
  • Shortly after the quarter's end, closed the previously announced sale of defense and security business for up to $45 million in total consideration, including a $15 million milestone-based contingent payment.
  • Executed an $85 million accelerated stock-repurchase transaction shortly thereafter, funded partly by proceeds from the sale.
  • Separately repurchased just more than $12 million in common shares, bringing year-to-date repurchases to nearly $100 million.

What management had to say 
iRobot Co-founder and CEO Colin Angle called the results "outstanding," noting that iRobot sustained its momentum, even on the heels of a record holiday season last quarter.

Angle also spoke to the longer-term potential for the new Braava jet -- which is still only available in the U.S. -- to diversify revenue away from the complementary Roomba line:

In the third quarter, we expect Braava jet to be on shelves in China and Japan, where we expect to leverage the necessity for daily mopping and the Asian consumer's enthusiasm for automating this task. Longer term, we expect the Braava jet with its disposable cleaning pads, to provide a future recurring revenue opportunity once we've built a reasonably sized installed base. With our new product, in combination with our larger format Braava, we're very optimistic about developing our wet floor care business into a material, second revenue stream.

Looking forward 
For the current quarter, iRobot expects home-robot revenue of $145 million to $150 million, or year-over-year growth of roughly 6% to 10%. This should translate to adjusted EBITDA of $9 million to $12 million, and earnings per share of $0.06 to $0.14. By comparison, analysts' consensus estimates predicted second-quarter earnings of just $0.01 per share on revenue of $128.4 million.

Finally, for the full year 2016, iRobot reiterated previous guidance for revenue of $630 million to $642 million, EPS of $1.20 to $1.40, and adjusted EBITDA of $80 million to $90 million.

In the end, with iRobot's divestiture of the defense and security business complete, the company is free to hone its focus on taking as much share of the home-robot market as possible. Given its impressive performance stateside, as well as the impending launch of Braava jet in China and Japan, where hardwood floors are the norm, I think investors have every reason to celebrate today's results, and look forward to the future.

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