GT earnings slide in second quarter

GT Advanced Technology’s second-quarter profits and revenue declined compared to last year at the same time, and the company has revised its guidance downward, but GT still has a $2.1 billion backlog of orders.The Merrimack-based maker of material and equipment used in manufacturing solar cells and LED lights, posted a net income of $36.9 million, or 29 cents a diluted share, in the second quarter of fiscal 2012, which ended on Oct. 1.That’s slightly below the $42.8 million for the same quarter last year. But for the first six months, the company made $89 million, compared to $59.3 million for the first six months of fiscal 2011.Quarterly sales totaled $217.7 million for the quarter, down more than $20 million compared to the previous year, though for the first fiscal half, the company has $448.8 million in revenue, a 23 percent increase.The company’s newly acquired sapphire business only translated into $8.5 million in quarterly sales, and that was due to sales of the sapphire crystals themselves, not the furnaces used to create them.The sale of photovoltaic furnaces to make solar cells was off as well, reflecting a world wide crash in the market.”The industry downturn is more severe than most expected, and as a result we now expect to see additional push outs of PV deliveries into FY13,” said Tom Gutierrez, president and chief executive officer. But Guitierrez said he believed that sales of furnaces to produce sapphire and polysilicon (the material used in solar cells) will strengthen.The company revised its revenue estimates for fiscal 2012 to between $950 million and $1.05 billion, down from $1 billion to $1.1 billion, and fully diluted earnings per share to range from $1.45 to $1.65 per share. Its previous range was $1.50 to $1.80 per share.However, the company has a $2.1 billion backlog, which includes $955 million in sapphire equipment. — BOB SANDERS/NEW HAMPSHIRE BUSINESS REVIEW

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