APR Energy sees slow first quarter, shares down

Thu Mar 21, 2013 6:12am EDT

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(Reuters) - Temporary power provider APR Energy Plc (APREN.L) forecast a slow first quarter after contract wins were delayed towards the end of 2012, sending its shares down nearly 7 percent.

The company, whose turbines and diesel generators lit up Japan in the aftermath of the 2011 earthquake, issued a profit warning in October after some operations started late and contract wins were delayed.

"First quarter will be slightly slow this year compared to last year," Chief Financial Officer Andrew Martinez told Reuters in an interview on Thursday.

Martinez, however, said lucrative contracts in Libya and Uruguay would kick in during the second half.

"We're very confident that the revenue will grow even higher than 2011-2012 ... probably in the range of between $320 and $340 million," Chief Financial Officer Andrew Martinez told Reuters in an interview.

"APR is proving to be a highly volatile stock," Investec analyst John Lawson said in a note. He is reviewing his target price and forecasts for the stock.

A provider of turnkey power plants for electricity shortfalls, disaster relief and major events, APR's clients are mostly located in developing markets such as Argentina, Burkina Faso and Yemen where demand for quick energy has been increasing.

APR shares were down almost 4 percent to 792.5 pence at 0931 on the London Stock Exchange on Thursday. They fell to a low of 770 pence earlier in the day.

The stock of the U.S.-based company spiked 10 percent last week when the company closed a 250-megawatt (MW) contract in Libya on March 15, its largest win to date.

APR Energy's order backlog grew 80 percent to 11,592 MW-months in the year ended December 31. Its total fleet capacity, which indicates how well the company can meet energy demand, rose 46 percent to 1,311 MW.

The company's pro-forma pretax profit rose 10 percent to $63.3 million in 2012, helped by new contracts amid higher demand for quick energy in developing markets.

Revenue rose 25 percent to $265.7 million, pro-forma.

(Reporting By Richa Naidu in Bangalore; Editing by Joyjeet Das, Maju Samuel)

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