Akamai Plunges in Wake of Q4 Report
Akamai Technologies (NASDAQ: AKAM), one of the Internet's leading content delivery infrastructure providers, reported sales that were below analysts' consensus expectations after the closing bell on Wednesday. Earnings, however, came in above Street estimates. The stock is tumbling in the after hours as investors are clearly disappointed with the lower than expected sales growth at Akamai in Q4. At last check, AKAM had lost more than 13 percent to $36.00 sending the stock firmly into negative territory for 2013.
The Cambridge, Massachusetts-based company reported earnings per share of $0.54 in the quarter versus $0.45 in last year's corresponding period. This came in ahead of Wall Street consensus EPS estimates of $0.50.
While earnings were above consensus and up strongly year over year, Akamai's revenue growth was below expectations. For Q1, the company reported revenue of $378 million. This represented growth of 17 percent versus last year and 9 percent versus Q3. The results missed analysts' consensus revenue estimates of $382 million by around $4 million.
The company's board of directors authorized a $150 million extension of Akamai's repurchase program. The company said that last year it purchased 4.4 million shares at a cost of around $141 million. If the stock remains down sharply on Thursday, it will wipe out a good portion of AKAM's near 24 percent gain over the last 52-weeks.
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