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Feb 17th, 2012
FLIR ups dividend despite Q4 revenue fall
Infrared sensor company’s revenues were down but earnings were up in the final quarter of 2011 thanks to lower costs.
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Major infrared sensor system and camera provider FLIR Systems has increased its shareholder dividend, despite what it called “a challenging macro environment” and expectations of a tough 2012 – particularly in the area of government procurement. CEO Earl Lewis told investors that he expected commercial sales to continue growing in 2012, but that sales to governments – largely for military applications – would be down. Overall, the company said that it expected total revenues to be up slightly this year and reach around $1.6 billion.

For the full fiscal year 2011, FLIR posted sales of $1.54 billion, well below its initial guidance of $1.7-$1.75 billion but up 11% from 2010, and a net profit of $221.5 million. But in the final quarter of the year, sales to government customers fell 18% compared with the closing quarter of 2010, to $180 million.

A large chunk of that revenue relates to spending out of the US Department of Defense (DoD) and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) budgets, with DoD spending in particular coming under pressure in recent months and set to be cut imminently.

In a conference call with analysts, FLIR said that although it did not experience any major program losses from the DoD, continued uncertainty over budgetary spending had delayed procurement. Sales to the US government have fallen proportionately as a result, accounting for less than 24% of total FLIR revenues in the final quarter of 2011, compared with nearly 31% a year earlier.



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