Technology

Garmin stock soars on better-than-expected profits, revenue

Garmin's new Vivofit 2 has features to develop healthier lifelong habits including audible alerts and an activity time to track and analyze individual workouts.
Garmin's new Vivofit 2 has features to develop healthier lifelong habits including audible alerts and an activity time to track and analyze individual workouts. TNS

Shares in Garmin Ltd. soared nearly 17 percent Wednesday after the maker of personal navigation devices reported a fourth-quarter profit that exceeded analyst expectations.

Garmin, which maintains its operating headquarters in Olathe, reported net income on a per share basis of 70 cents for the quarter that ended Dec. 26. The average estimate of 10 analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research called for earnings of 47 cents per share.

Traders rewarded Garmin by pushing its stock up $5.83 to close at $41.06, making it one of the top-performers on Wall Street.

Garmin reported fourth-quarter profit of $132.4 million, down from net earnings of $210.2 million for the year-earlier period.

The company posted higher-than-expected revenue of $781.4 million in the period, although it was down from $803.3 million in the fourth quarter of 2014.

Garmin said its sales were boosted by strong demand for wellness, running and cycling fitness trackers, navigational devices in aircraft and other satellite-based products.

Revenue in the company’s fitness business led the way, climbing nearly 14 percent in the quarter. Aviation sales grew 12 percent.

Automotive revenue, however, fell about 21 percent, reflecting ongoing heavy competition in recent years from other navigational devices.

For the year, Garmin reported profit of $456.2 million, up from $364.2 million a year earlier. Revenue was reported as $2.82 billion, down 2 percent from the previous fiscal year.

Garmin expects full-year earnings this year to be $2.25 per share, with revenue of $2.82 billion.

“We believe we have strong products across all of our business segments and are well positioned as we enter 2016,” Cliff Pemble, Garmin’s president and chief executive, said in a statement.

Steve Rosen: 816-234-4879

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