Rockwell Automation, Inc.
) reported first quarter fiscal 2013 earnings of $1.23 per share,
down 6% from $1.31 per share earned in the prior-year quarter.
The results missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.26.
Sales inched up 1% to $1.489 billion in the quarter,
surpassing the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.481 billion.
Organic sales increased 1.5% but currency translation reduced
sales by less than 1 percentage point. Growth witnessed in Latin
America and the U.S markets was mitigated by declines in
Asia-Pacific and Europe, Middle East, Africa (EMEA).
Cost of sales increased 3% year over year to $882 million in
the quarter. Gross profit declined 2% year over year to $607
million, leading to a 120 basis points (bps) contraction in gross
margin to 40.8%.
Selling, general and administrative expenses increased 3% to
$373 million from the prior-year quarter. Segment operating
income was $276 million in the quarter compared with $292 million
in the first quarter of 2012. Segment operating margin contracted
130 basis points to 18.5%.
Architecture & Software:
Net sales inched up 1% to $657 million in the quarter. Organic
sales increased 2% while currency translation affected sales by
1%. Operating earnings were $183.2 million, down 3% year over
year. Segment operating margin was 27.9% compared with 29.1% a
Control Products & Solutions:
Net sales increased 1% to $831.7 million in the quarter. Segment
operating earnings declined 10% to $92.8 million. Segment
operating margin was 11.2%, a 130-basis point contraction year
Rockwell Automation had cash and cash equivalents of $954.3
million as of Dec 31, 2012 compared with $903.9 million as of Sep
30, 2012. Total debt was $1.16 billion as of Dec 31, 2012,
compared with $1.06 billion as of Sep 30, 2012.
The debt-to-capitalization ratio was 37% as of Dec 31, 2012,
compared with 36% as of Sep 30, 2012. In the first quarter of
fiscal 2013, the company generated cash flow from operating
activities of $167.3 million in contrast to cash usage of $189
million in the prior year quarter.
During the reported quarter, Rockwell Automation repurchased
1.2 million shares for $88 million. As of Dec 31, 2012, the
company had $848.9 million worth of shares remaining under the $1
billion share repurchase authorization.
Rockwell Automation affirmed its sales guidance in the range
of $6.35 to $6.65 billion for fiscal 2013. The company has
factored in organic growth of 1% to 5% while currency translation
and acquisitions will add one point of growth. It expects
earnings in the range of $5.35 to $5.75 per share for the full
Based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Rockwell Automation is an
original equipment manufacturer (OEM) of industrial automation
equipment, application specific integrated software and
consulting design services. The company retains a short-term
Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). Its peers
HollySys Automation Technologies, Ltd.
) have yet to announce their December quarter results.
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