(Adds CFO, analyst comments, details from conference call,
By Lehar Maan and Aurindom Mukherjee
July 16 SanDisk Corp gave a
current-quarter revenue forecast that was below Wall Street's
estimate, warning that it would be unable to the meet the
booming demand for solid-state drives and memory chips, and its
shares fell 9 percent in extended trading.
The company also reported second-quarter profit and revenue
that barely beat analysts' expectations, disappointing investors
who have seen the company blow past Wall Street's forecasts for
at least the past eight quarters.
That streak was threatened by the company's third-quarter
revenue forecast of $1.68 billion to $1.73 billion, which was
short of analysts' average estimate of $1.74 billion, according
to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
SanDisk's growing focus on high-end solid-state drives, or
SSDs, helped offset volatile prices for memory chips, powering
the company's stellar results and, since late March, its stock's
rise to life-high levels.
However, the company's increasing focus on cost control has
dented its ability to expand capacity to keep up with industry
demand, said Betsy Van Hees, an analyst at Wedbush Securities.
"They find themselves in a situation in which they were a
couple of years ago, when in the industry the supply-demand is
balanced and they are supply constrained," she said.
SanDisk's cost cutting target would likely be around the
middle to "somewhat" higher than the middle of its 15-25 percent
forecast for the year, Chief Financial Officer Judy Bruner said
on a conference call.
The company is increasingly using its memory chips in the
SSDs that it sells directly, but Bruner said gross margins on
these embedded products were "somewhat below" the corporate
average, which would dent gross margins going forward.
SanDisk said it continues to expect adjusted gross margins
of 47-49 percent in the current quarter. Gross margins rose to
48 percent in the second quarter from 47 percent a year earlier.
The company's revenue from SSDs comprised about 29 percent
of the total revenue in the second quarter ended June 29, up
from 16 percent a year earlier.
SanDisk, which counts Facebook Inc and Apple Inc
among its customers, said total revenue rose 11 percent
to $1.63 billion.
Net income rose 4.6 percent to $273.9 million, or $1.14 per
share. Excluding one time items, SanDisk earned $1.41 per share.
Analysts had expected a profit of $1.39 per share on revenue
of $1.60 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Shares of the company closed at $107.83, after hitting a
life-high of $108.77 on Nasdaq on Wednesday. The stock fell to
$97.68 in extended trading.
(Editing by Savio D'Souza)