×

UPDATE 3-Emerson takeover target Rockwell says to focus on its business

* Shares fall as much as 4.4 pct

* Sees FY18 adj. EPS $7.20-$7.50 vs est $7.38 (Adds comments from conference call, share move and analyst comment)

Nov 8 (Reuters) - Rockwell Automation Inc, which rebuffed Emerson Electric Co's $27.6 billion takeover bid last month, said on Wednesday it will focus on its business as it missed Wall Street's quarterly revenue and profit expectations.

Rockwell, which provides factory automation systems, also forecast fiscal 2018 adjusted profit below analysts' estimates.

"We're here today to discuss our results and fiscal 2018 guidance," Rockwell Chief Executive Blake Moret said on a post-earnings conference call, after being peppered with questions by analysts regarding Emerson's bid.

The comments came a day after Emerson CEO David Farr said he believed the combination is "compelling" and "highly strategic."

Shares of Rockwell fell as much as 4.4 percent to $192.00.

"We are hopeful that Rockwell's board and management team will engage with us for the benefit of all stakeholders. But we ... will be disappointed if Rockwell lets this unique opportunity go unexplored..." Farr said on a conference call on Tuesday.

Morningstar analyst Barbara Noverini said in a client note that she was not convinced Rockwell is interested in rapid growth at the expense of its independence.

Q4, FORECAST MISS

Rockwell on Wednesday forecast its fiscal 2018 adjusted profit to be $7.35 per share at the mid-point, below Wall Street estimates of $7.38 per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Rockwell's operating margins fell to 17 percent in the fourth quarter from 19.8 percent a year earlier, hurt by its control products business.

Rockwell's net income rose 10.5 percent to $204.6 million, or $1.57 per share, in the quarter ended Sept. 30.

On an adjusted basis, the Milwaukee, Wisconsin-based company earned $1.69 per share. Analysts on average had expected a profit of $1.73 per share.

Revenue rose 8 percent to $1.67 billion, missing Wall Street estimates slightly. (Reporting by Sanjana Shivdas in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel)