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Sykes 4Q results and outlook disappoint

Mon, 02/27/2012 - 2:05pm
The Associated Press

Sykes Enterprises Inc. reported a fourth-quarter profit Monday, but the outsourcing company's results missed expectations and it issued disappointing guidance for the first quarter and full year.

The company's shares fell more than 6 percent in after-hours trading.

Sykes, which struggled with the impact of restructuring, foreign currency and a higher tax rate during the quarter, earned $5 million, or 12 cents per share. That compares with a loss of $17 million, or 37 cents per share, for the same quarter of the prior year. After adjusting for special items, Sykes earned 27 cents per share versus 35 cents per share.

Revenue dropped from $300.4 million to $276.2 million.

Those results fell short of the 28 cents per share on revenue of $291.7 million expected by analysts, according to FactSet.

Sykes, based in Tampa, Fla., recently decided to exit its business in South Africa and Ireland, and to sell its business in Spain. It also adjusted operations in the Netherlands and U.S. The company expects the changes to impact its revenue for the full year.

Sykes made $48.3 million, or $1.06 per share, for all of 2011 compared with a loss of $10.3 million, or 22 cents per share, in 2010. Revenue rose to $1.17 billion from $1.12 billion.

The company offered a cautious outlook, given concerns about the weak economy in Europe and economic recovery in the U.S., among other issues. It also expects foreign exchange rates and tax rates to hurt its results in the short term.

Sykes expects to earn 12 to 15 cents per share in the first quarter, or 20 to 23 cents per share on an adjusted basis, on revenue of $270 million to $275 million.

Analysts forecast adjusted earnings of 30 cents per share on revenue of $297.2 million for the first quarter

Sykes anticipates earnings of 88 to 98 cents per share for the full year, or $1.10 to $1.20 per share on an adjusted basis. It forecast revenue of $1.1 to $1.11 billion.

Analysts expect earnings of $1.47 per share on revenue of $1.24 billion.

Sykes shares fell $1.08, or 6.3 percent, to $16.05 in after-hours trading.

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