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ADTRAN’s Q3 sales disappoint, fall below guidance

ADTRAN Holdings, Inc. (ADTN) announced its financial results for the third quarter of 2023.

As reflected in the preliminary release, revenue for the third quarter was $272.3 million, slightly below the lower end of the guidance range.

GAAP gross margin for the quarter was 27.3%, and it was negatively impacted by an inventory write-off of approximately $21.0 million as a result of the exit from certain product lines in connection with our restructuring and the newly implemented and expanded business efficiency program.

Non-GAAP gross margin was 40.3%, and it was positively impacted by a more favorable customer and product mix and lower purchasing and transportation costs.

GAAP operating margin for the quarter was negative 32.8%, and it was negatively impacted by the exit from certain product lines discussed above and a $37.9 million goodwill impairment charge related to our Services & Support reporting unit. Sequentially, the Company reduced GAAP operating expenses by 8% from $137.2 million in the second quarter 2023 to $125.7 million in the third quarter 2023.

Non-GAAP operating margin for the quarter was negative 1.9%, which was at the upper end of the guidance range. The Company reduced non-GAAP operating expenses by 6.3% from $122.7 million in the second quarter 2023 to $114.9 million in the third quarter 2023.

GAAP net loss attributable to the Company for the third quarter of 2023 was $72.7 million. Diluted loss per share attributable to the Company for the quarter was $0.93.

Non-GAAP net loss attributable to the Company was $10.8 million. Non-GAAP diluted loss per share attributable to the Company was $0.14.

Business efficiency program
Due to the uncertainty around the current macro-economic environment, customer inventory levels and its impact on customer spending levels, the Company has implemented a comprehensive business efficiency program. The program includes:

  • a significant cost efficiency program targeting a reduction of non-GAAP operating expenses of approximately $90 million for the year 2024 as compared to 2023 and a projected $15 million reduction in non-GAAP operating expenses for the fourth quarter of 2023 compared to the third quarter of 2023; and
  • a capital efficiency program which includes a site consolidation plan that management expects to generate proceeds up to $150 million and the suspension of the quarterly dividend.

Ultimately, we believe the successful execution of our business efficiency program will benefit our shareholders.

ADTRAN Holdings’ Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Tom Stanton stated, “We anticipate that the ongoing uncertainty affecting customer spending will extend into 2024. We are actively addressing the challenges in our industry and have implemented a business efficiency program to ensure improvement in long-term shareholder return. Through this program, we are aiming to lower our costs by $90 million by the end of 2024 as compared to 2023. Although the environment has proven to be very challenging, interest in our products continues to grow as we gained market share and added new customers during the quarter. We expect the combination of our continued growth in market share with our new operating model to substantially improve returns to all our stakeholders.”

Financial Outlook for the fourth quarter 2023

The outlook for the fourth quarter 2023, is as follows:

  • revenue to be between $210 million and $240 million; and
  • non-GAAP operating margin between negative 7% and 0%.

Non-GAAP operating margin (which is calculated as non-GAAP operating (loss) income divided by revenue) and non-GAAP operating expense are non-GAAP financial measures. The Company has provided fourth quarter guidance with regard to non-GAAP operating margin and projected reductions in non-GAAP operating expense as a result of its business efficiency program. These measures exclude from the corresponding GAAP financial measures the effect of adjustments as described below under “Explanation of Use of Non-GAAP Financial Measures.” The Company has not provided a reconciliation of such non-GAAP guidance to guidance presented on a GAAP basis because it cannot predict and quantify without unreasonable effort all of the adjustments that may occur during the period due to the difficulty of predicting the timing and amounts of various items within a reasonable range. In particular, these non-GAAP financial measures exclude certain items, including continued restructuring and integration expenses that will continue to evolve as our business efficiency program is implemented and, therefore, the Company is unable to quantitatively predict. Depending on the materiality of these items, they could have a significant impact on the Company’s GAAP financial results.

The Company confirmed that it will hold a conference call to discuss its third quarter results on Tuesday, November 7, 2023, at 9:30 a.m. Central Time, or 4:30 p.m. Central European Summer Time. ADTRAN Holdings will webcast this conference call. To listen and view our investor presentation, simply visit our Investor Relations site at approximately 10 minutes prior to the start of the call, click on the event “ADTRAN Holdings Releases 3rd Quarter 2023 Financial Results and Earnings Call”, and click on the webcast link.

An online replay of the Company’s conference call, as well as the transcript of the Company’s conference call, will be available on the Investor Relations site approximately 24 hours following the call and will remain available for at least 12 months. For more information, visit or email [email protected].

Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
Statements contained in this press release which are not historical facts, such as those relating to expectations regarding earnings, expenses and margin; ADTRAN Holdings’ ability to reduce expenses in the coming year and the amount thereof through its implementation of the business efficiency program; and ADTRAN Holdings’ strategy, outlook and financial guidance, are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements can also generally be identified by the use of words such as “believe,” “expect,” “intend,” “estimate,” “anticipate,” “will,” “may,” “could” and similar expressions. In addition, ADTRAN Holdings, through its senior management, may from time to time make forward-looking public statements concerning the matters described herein. All such projections and other forward-looking information speak only as of the date hereof, and ADTRAN Holdings undertakes no duty to publicly update or revise such forward-looking information, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise, except to the extent as may be required by law. All such forward-looking statements are necessarily estimates and reflect management’s best judgment based upon current information. Actual events or results may differ materially from those anticipated in these forward-looking statements as a result of a variety of factors. While it is impossible to identify all such factors, factors which have caused and may in the future cause actual events or results to differ materially from those estimated by ADTRAN Holdings include, but are not limited to: (i) risks and uncertainties related to manufacturing and supply chain constraints; (ii) risks and uncertainties related to the completed business combination between the Company, ADTRAN, Inc. (“ADTRAN”) and Adtran Networks SE (“Adtran Networks”), including risks related to the ability to successfully integrate ADTRAN’s and Adtran Networks’ businesses, the disruption of management time from ongoing business operations due to integration efforts following the business combination, and the risk that ADTRAN Holdings may be unable to achieve expected synergies or that it may take longer or be more costly than expected to achieve those synergies; (iii) risks and uncertainties relating to the recent restatement of our previously issued consolidated financial statements and ongoing material weakness in our internal control over financial reporting; (iv) risks and uncertainties relating to ADTRAN Holdings’ ability to reduce expenditures and the impact of such reductions on its financial results and financial condition; (v) the risk of fluctuations in revenue due to lengthy sales and approval processes required by major and other service providers for new products, as well as ongoing tighter inventory management of ADTRAN Holdings’ customers; (vi) the risk posed by potential breaches of information systems and cyber-attacks; (vii) the risk that ADTRAN Holdings may not be able to effectively compete, including through product improvements and development; and (viii) other risks set forth in ADTRAN Holdings’ public filings made with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2022, as amended, as well as its Form 10-Q for the quarter ended June 30, 2023.

Explanation of Use of Non-GAAP Financial Measures
Set forth in the tables below are reconciliations of gross profit, gross margin, operating expenses, operating loss, other (expense) income, net (loss) income inclusive of the non-controlling interest, net loss attributable to the Company, net loss attributable to the non-controlling interest, and loss per share – basic and diluted, attributable to the Company, in each case as reported based on generally accepted accounting principles in the United States (“GAAP”), to non-GAAP gross profit, non-GAAP gross margin, non-GAAP operating expenses, non-GAAP operating (loss) income, non-GAAP other (expense) income, non-GAAP net (loss) income inclusive of the non-controlling interest, non-GAAP net (loss) income attributable to the Company, non-GAAP net (loss) income attributable to the non-controlling interest, and non-GAAP (loss) earnings per share – basic and diluted, attributable to the Company, respectively. Such non-GAAP measures exclude acquisition related expenses, amortization and adjustments (consisting of intangible amortization of backlog, developed technology, customer relationships, and trade names acquired in connection with business combinations and amortization of inventory fair value adjustments), stock-based compensation expense, amortization of pension actuarial losses, deferred compensation adjustments, integration expenses, restructuring expenses, asset and goodwill impairments, changes in valuation allowance related to our deferred tax assets, and the tax effect of these adjustments to net income. These measures are used by management in our ongoing planning and annual budgeting processes. Additionally, we believe the presentation of these non-GAAP measures when combined with the presentation of the most directly comparable GAAP financial measure, is beneficial to the overall understanding of ongoing operating performance of the Company.

The information contained in this press release is solely based on unaudited condensed consolidated results. These non-GAAP financial measures are not prepared in accordance with, or an alternative for, GAAP and therefore should not be considered in isolation or as a substitution for analysis of our results as reported under GAAP. Additionally, our calculation of non-GAAP measures may not be comparable to similar measures calculated by other companies.

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