Garmin Ltd. (GRMN - Free Report) reported fourth-quarter 2019 pro-forma earnings of $1.29 per share, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.00. Moreover, the figure improved 26% on a year-over-year basis and 1.6% sequentially.
Net sales came in at $1.102 billion, up 18% from the year-ago quarter and 18% sequentially. The top-line also outpaced the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $998.6 million.
Strong performance of its fitness, outdoor, marine and aviation segments drove the year-over-year top-line growth.
Management is focused on continued innovation, diversification and market expansion to explore growth opportunities in all business segments.
Outdoor (27% of net sales): The segment generated fourth-quarter sales of $294.8 million, improving 16% year over year. The year-over-year increase was primarily driven by robust demand for Garmin’s adventure watches.
Fitness (34%): This segment generated sales of $372.5 million, which increased 34% from the year-ago quarter. This can be primarily attributed to its well-performing advanced wearables. Further, positive contributions from the Tacx buyout aided top-line growth.
Aviation (18%): The segment generated sales of $193.1 million, improving 22% on a year-over-year basis. This can be primarily attributed to the well-performing OEM and aftermarket systems.
Marine (11%): Garmin generated sales of $115.8 million from this segment, increasing 22% on a year-over-year basis. The company witnessed growing demand for chartplotters, advanced sonars and the revolutionary new Force trolling motor during the reported quarter, which in turn drove the segment’s topline.
Auto (10%): This segment generated sales of $126 million, down 15% from the prior-year quarter. The decline was mainly due to shrinking of the personal navigation device market and lower year-over-year OEM sales.
Garmin Ltd. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise
In the fourth quarter, gross margin was 58%, which contracted 90 basis points (bps) from the year-ago period.
The company’s operating expenses of $363 million were up 11% from the prior-year quarter. However, as a percentage of revenues, the figure contracted 210 bps year over year to 32.9%
Operating margin of 25.1% in the reported quarter expanded 120 bps year over year.
Balance Sheet & Cash Flow
At the end of the fourth quarter, cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities came in $1.40 billion, higher than $1.28 billion in the third quarter.
Inventories were $752.9 million compared with $749.8 million in the third quarter. We note that the company had no long-term debt in the reported quarter.
At the end of the fourth quarter, it generated free cash flow of $208 million.
For 2020, Garmin issued its guidance for pro-forma earnings of $4.60 per share. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings is pegged at $4.27 per share.
The company expects revenues to be $4 billion. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for revenues is pegged at $3.81 billion.
It expects gross and operating margins to be 59.2% and 23.5%, respectively, for 2020.
Zacks Rank & Key Picks
Garmin currently has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Some better-ranked stocks in the broader technology sector include Itron, Inc. (ITRI - Free Report) , Teradyne, Inc. (TER - Free Report) and Agilent Technologies (A - Free Report) , each carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Long-term earnings growth for Itron, Teradyne, and Agilent is currently projected at 25%, 13.21% and 12.5%, respectively.
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