Corvis cuts losses as revenue falls

Columbia company hurt by telecom malaise

July 26, 2002|By Stacey Hirsh | Stacey Hirsh,SUN STAFF

Corvis Corp., a Columbia maker of fiber-optic equipment, said yesterday that its losses narrowed while revenue fell more than 95 percent in the second quarter.

The company reported a net loss of $119.1 million, or 31 cents a share, on revenue of $3 million for the quarter that ended June 29. For the corresponding quarter last year, Corvis reported a net loss of $821.8 million, or $2.36 a share, on revenue of $65 million.

"To say that market conditions in our sector remain difficult would be an understatement," Chairman and Chief Executive Officer David Huber said during a conference call yesterday.

Corvis said revenue came from contracts with France Telecom SA, Broadwing Communications Inc. and Williams Communications Inc.

The company's adjusted net loss - which does not include amortization of intangible assets, restructuring and other charges - was $54.9 million, or 14 cents a share, in the quarter, compared with an adjusted net loss of $32.2 million, or 9 cents a share, in the corresponding quarter of last year.

Several other telecommunications companies are also struggling. "Everyone's doing pretty poorly right now. The market's just really terrible," said Mark Lutkowitz, a telecommunications analyst for Charlottesville, Va.-based Communications Industry Researchers.

Andy Backman, vice president of investor relations and public relations for Corvis, said the company has reduced its consumption of cash for six consecutive quarters.

"We've done a number of reorganizations, and reductions in work force, and consolidation of facilities," he said. "You're starting to see that impact."

Corvis laid off 70 workers during the quarter and said it plans to cut an additional 170 jobs in France. The company also laid off about 300 workers in November, then quietly cut about 120 more in March, according to filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The earnings were released after the market closed yesterday. Shares fell 6 cents, or 9.68 percent, to close at 56 cents.

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