Palm Posts Quarterly Loss After Delay of Treo Model

Palm, the maker of Treo smartphones, posted a quarterly loss and forecast lower-than-expected revenue in the current period, sending its shares down almost 10 percent.

Palm Centro
Achille Bigliardi
Palm Centro

Palm's net loss for the fiscal period ended November 30 was $9.63 million, or 9 cents per share, compared with net income of $12.8 million, or 12 cents per share, a year earlier. Revenue fell to $349.6 million from $392.9 million.

The company's shares tumbled 9.8 percent in extended trading following the earnings report, after closing up 5 percent at $5.93 on Nasdaq.

Palm forecast fiscal third-quarter revenue between $310 million and $320 million, less than analysts' average estimate of $356.2 million as compiled by Reuters Estimates.

It said it would stop giving specific financial forecasts in future periods and would limit its outlook to "general business guidance and comments on industry trends."

Analysts, on average, expected a second-quarter net loss of 21 cents per share and a loss excluding some costs, such as stock-based compensation, of 9 cents per share, according to Reuters Estimates. Palm reported a second-quarter loss before certain items of 7 cents per share.

Analysts forecast revenue of $348.2 million.

Palm earlier this month said shipments of its Treo 755 model, which the company had expected to to have been certified in the quarter, would be delayed. It also said increased warranty expenses and higher-than-expected shipments of a lower-end model led to lower profit margins.

Palm, based in Sunnyvale, Calif., forecast a fiscal third-quarter loss before certain costs of 14 cents per share to 16 cents per share and a net loss ranging from 31 cents per share to a loss of 33 cents per share.

The projected net loss includes $16 million to $18 million in restructuring charges, including severance and facility closure costs as Palm cuts an unspecified number of jobs and reduces other costs.

The company forecast a third-quarter gross profit margin ranging from 30.3 percent to 30.8 percent, based on U.S. generally accepted accounting principles.

Analysts, on average, were expecting a third-quarter net loss of 6 cents per share, according to Reuters Estimates.