Clearfield, Inc. (CLFD) Tops Q2 EPS by 10c, Revenues Beat
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Clearfield, Inc. (NASDAQ: CLFD) reported Q2 EPS of $0.27, $0.10 better than the analyst estimate of $0.17. Revenue for the quarter came in at $29 million versus the consensus estimate of $25.8 million.
Management Commentary“During the second quarter of fiscal 2021 we saw demand for fiber-fed broadband networks expand across the Community Broadband market,” said Clearfield President and CEO Cheri Beranek. “This demand helped drive a 45% increase in net sales to a record $29.7 million, bringing our total net sales for the first six months of fiscal 2021 to a record $56.8 million, which was up 43% year-over-year. Clearfield is strongly executing on its brand promise of providing highly configurable fiber distribution and pathway products to meet broadband service provider requirements. Order bookings started strong in January and accelerated through quarter-end, resulting in a 115% increase in backlog to $19.2 million on March 31, 2021 vs. $9.3 million on March 31, 2020. We expect to ship the majority our backlog during fiscal Q3 and have begun to receive longer-scheduled orders as service providers establish longer term deployment plans.
“Clearfield remains committed to fulfilling the increased demand of smaller providers across the country. We began investing early last fall in our drop-cable production facilities because we anticipated take rates would increase among existing providers as potential subscribers were added to existing networks. This timely investment has proven to be a meaningful competitive advantage as we continue to offer superior lead-times compared to the competition. In addition, as providers with multi-state networks are now overbuilding their networks with fiber, we are developing an increasing presence within the Tier 2 community. We anticipate this market-based demand will continue moving forward.
“The government-financed broadband program under the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF) is in the planning stages for providers and will start to be deployed later this summer and fall. In addition, while the recently announced American Jobs Plan within the Biden infrastructure bill is still being debated in Congress, the White House’s request for $100 billion in funding for sustainable high-speed broadband is a positive reflection on expanded fiber opportunities we believe are possible in the years ahead.
“Although sales in our Tier 1 market have not yet experienced the same robust growth as our other markets, we continue to support our sales presence in the Tier 1 National Carrier market for both fiber to the home and business as well as for 5G initiatives. We shipped several new products into that market during Q2 and are working to gain a stronger foothold with them. As we have previously communicated, the global pandemic has stalled the introduction and training of our new technologies into the Tier 1 market. As 5G deployments into the access network increase, we are optimistic for increasing revenue among Tier 1 markets moving forward.
“Our strategic plan continues on its multi-year initiative to enable Clearfield to ‘Come of Age.’ Our organization has specific and measurable objectives to increase our topline, reduce our costs and expand our reach. Key to our success remains our loyalty to the providers that have grown alongside us, while delivering new innovations for the integration of wireline and wireless networks as we move into new markets.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically boosted broadband demand but also created supply chain challenges to fulfill that demand. The strong partnerships we have built with our suppliers globally have and will continue to be crucial. We are optimistic that we will be able to procure the necessary components for our growth ahead. However, the pressure on the supply chain by increased demand and global supply chain disruptions, caused by the pandemic, the harsh Texas winter, container shortages, the blocking of the Suez Canal and other logistical issues have shown how fragile the supply chain can be. In particular, Clearfield’s manufacturing requires supplies of raw materials, like optical fiber cable and resins necessary for its fiber management product line.
“Looking ahead, the rural broadband market remains ripe for growth and the strategic investments we have made and the presence we have established over the last 10 years will be beneficial for Clearfield. While the volatility of the supply chain potentially poses challenges in the near term, our growing backlog, expanding pipeline and building market demand, give us confidence in our ability to realize net sales of $120 million to $125 million in fiscal 2021, which represents year-over-year growth of 32% at the midpoint. As travel re-emerges, we anticipate our Selling, general and administrative costs will grow moderately. In addition, we will be making strategic investments in additional customer-facing positions in order to maintain our leading customer service programs to our expanding customer base. For the remaining quarters of fiscal 2021, we anticipate net income to be at or above 12% as a percentage of net sales.”
For earnings history and earnings-related data on Clearfield, Inc. (CLFD) click here.
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