Presstek reports $4.9m loss

Presstek posted a net loss of $4.9 million, or 13 cents per share, in the second quarter, the company reported on Thursday.

The Hudson-based maker of printing equipment blamed the loss on “one-time expenses and special charges of $5.8 million,” but did not detail those charges in the earnings release.

The loss compares unfavorably with the same quarter of the previous year, when the company posted a net gain of $2.6 million, or 7 cents per share, and the previous quarter, when the company lost $866,000, or 3 cents per share.

Presstek instead focused on $68.8 million in revenue, which was up 5 percent from the previous quarter, but was down year over year by roughly $2 million. A much larger percentage of the revenue is from the firm’s “growth portfolio” — digital and chemical-free equipment. The company exited the analog business after a chemical spill earlier this year at its Hadley, Mass., plant, and that has been a drag on short term sales and profitability.

Despite revenue holding relatively steady, general and administrative costs jumped from $3.8 million to $9 million. The company also posted $793,000 in restructuring charges.

There was also a problem relating to operating margins, particularly in equipment and service, which were at 8 and 11 percent, respectively.

In a conference call following the earnings release, Jeff Jacobson, president and chief executivem, said that the margins and expenses made him “nauseous.”

“Although it’s clear we have a great deal of work ahead of us, I am more excited today about our prospects for success when I was on my first day,” said Jacobson who took over three months ago.
Jacobson pointed to changes in the fall that will help turn the company around, but did not detail what they are.
The company still has $7.3 million in cash and cash equivalents, down about $2 million from the same quarter in the previous year. – BOB SANDERS

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