24.02.12

Orion Energy Systems: Preliminary Fiscal 2012 Q3 Results

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Orion Energy Systems, Inc., a leading power technology enterprise, announced its preliminary financial results for its fiscal 2012 third quarter and fiscal year-to-date period ended December 31, 2011.

As previously announced in its press release on February 1, 2012, the Company is currently working through a restatement of its financial statements for its third and fourth quarters of fiscal 2011, including its fiscal 2011 year-end financial statements, and its first and second quarters of fiscal 2012. The Company has engaged its current independent registered public accounting firm to re-audit and restate its fiscal 2011 year-end financial statements rather than its prior independent registered public accounting firm which previously audited such statements.

The Company, together with its independent registered public accounting firm, concluded that generally accepted accounting principles require that revenue be recognized from sales of its solar photovoltaic, or PV, systems using the percentage-of-completion method rather than based upon multiple deliverable elements. The Company's prior method of accounting for sales of its solar PV systems required it to recognize revenue in two stages (i) when the title to the products had been transferred and (ii) when the service installation was complete. The percentage-of-completion method, however, recognizes revenue over the life of the project as measured by the percentage of costs incurred to date of the total estimated costs for each contract as materials are installed. The percentage-of-completion method requires revenue from the delivery of products to be deferred and the cost of such products to be capitalized as a deferred cost and current asset on the balance sheet. The difference between the percentage-of-completion method and the multiple deliverable elements method is a matter of timing, with no impact on overall earnings or cash flow from the individual contracts.

Fiscal 2012 Outlook

For fiscal 2012, the Company is reducing its previously provided annual revenue and earnings per share guidance. The Company now expects fiscal 2012 revenue to be between $100.0 million and $103.0 million and its fiscal 2012 earnings per share to be between $0.03 and $0.05 per diluted share. The Company's fiscal 2012 revenue guidance has been lowered based upon current market conditions related to customer capital spending. The earnings per share guidance has been lowered based upon the reduction in revenue guidance and the higher mix of solar PV revenues in fiscal 2012 which has resulted in lower overall gross margins and has impacted earnings per share by approximately $0.06.

The Company currently expects the forecasted ranges for other key financial-statement line items and metrics for fiscal 2012 to be as follows:

    Gross margin — 30.1% to 31.0%
    Operating margin — 1.0% to 2.0%
    Effective tax rate — 38.0% to 40.0%
    Diluted share count — 23.0 to 23.4 million
    Capital spending (excluding OTA contract financing) - $4.2 to $4.4 million
    Depreciation and amortization - $4.0 to $4.1 million
    Stock-based compensation expense - $1.3 to $1.4 million

The above guidance is based on the Company's current expectations. These statements are forward-looking and actual results may differ materially. The Company assumes no obligation to publicly update or revise its outlook. Investors are reminded that actual results may differ, and may differ materially, from these estimates for the reasons described below under the caption "Safe Harbor Statement" and in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The foregoing financial information reflects the new accounting method described above for the Company's solar PV system sales, is unaudited and preliminary and is subject to change based upon the Company's completion of its financial statements restatement process, as well as normal accounting period end review procedures and adjustments.

Third Quarter of Fiscal 2012

For the third quarter of fiscal 2012, the Company reported revenues of $27.4 million, a 16% increase compared to $23.6 million for the third quarter of fiscal 2011.

Total backlog at the end of the third quarter of fiscal 2012 was a record $50.6 million compared to $15.0 million at the end of the fiscal 2011 third quarter and $23.6 million at the end of the second quarter of fiscal 2012. For the third quarter of fiscal 2012, "contracted revenue" was $54.3 million. Contracted revenue is explained in more detail below.

For the third quarter of fiscal 2012, the Company reported net income of $0.1 million, or $0.00 per share. For the third quarter of fiscal 2011, the Company's net loss was $(0.2) million, or $(0.01) per share.

Nine months ended December 31, 2011

For the first nine months of fiscal 2012, revenues were $79.2 million, a 40% increase compared to $56.5 million for the same period in fiscal 2011. For the first nine months of fiscal 2012, contracted revenue was $111.4 million.

For the first nine months of fiscal 2012, the Company reported net income of $0.8 million, or $0.03 per diluted share, compared to a net loss of $(0.2) million, or $(0.01) per share for the same period of fiscal 2011.

Neal Verfuerth, Chief Executive Officer of Orion commented, "Despite what remains a challenging environment for capital spending, supply chain interruptions and changes in our revenue recognition, the long-term investments we've made are beginning to pay off as expected. Expansion of our product and services offering and our wholesale distribution channel provide new and existing customers a holistic approach to managing their energy spend. We have established Orion as the leading "power technology enterprise." We can take our customers down a path toward "energy independence" — getting them off the grid - at prices per kWh competitive with their utilities. Our strategy and proven track record assure us a sustainably different value proposition in our target markets. We look forward to surpassing the $100 million revenue inflection point and continuing to strengthen the operational leverage we've established."

Cash, Debt and Liquidity Position

The Company had $18.2 million in cash and cash equivalents and $1.0 million in short-term investments as of December 31, 2011, compared to $11.6 million and $1.0 million, respectively, as of March 31, 2011. Total debt was $8.7 million as of December 31, 2011, compared to $5.4 million as of March 31, 2011. There were no borrowings outstanding under the Company's revolving credit facility as of December 31, 2011, which has an availability of $13.3 million.

Key Business Highlights

During the third quarter of fiscal 2012:

    The Company increased the number of facilities retrofitted with its Compact Modular high-intensity fluorescent lighting technology to 7,673 as of the end of the fiscal 2012 third quarter (compared to 7,368 as of the end of the second quarter of fiscal 2012), representing 1.2 billion square feet of installed facilities.
    Total deployments of the Company's InteLite® wireless controls increased to 760 customer locations, consisting of 95,294 dynamic control devices (or transceivers) and 613 control panels (compared to 86,329 transceivers and 592 control panels as of the end of the second quarter of fiscal 2012). The deployments represent 42.9 million square feet of installed facilities as of the end of the third quarter of fiscal 2012 (compared to 38.8 million square feet as of the end of the second quarter of fiscal 2012).
    Total Megawatts, or MWs, under contract from solar projects increased to 24.0 MWs (compared to 11.7 MWs as of the end of the second quarter of fiscal 2012) as of the end of the third quarter of fiscal 2012.
    Total Apollo® solar light pipes installed increased to 14,467 total units (compared to 14,021 total units as of the end of the second quarter 2012), representing 6.5 million square feet of installed facilities as of the end of the third quarter of fiscal 2012 (compared to 6.3 million square feet of installed facilities as of the end of the second quarter of fiscal 2012).
    In November 2011, the Company announced an energy efficiency finance partnership with De Lage Landen for the purpose of financing its Orion Throughput Agreements (OTA). The agreement differs from prior debt financings the Company has completed, in that it provides for the non-recourse transfer of ownership of the asset directly to De Lage Landen upon project completion.
    The Company repurchased 98,300 shares of its common stock at an average price per share of approximately $2.84 under its approved $2.5 million share repurchase plan.

Supplemental Information

In conjunction with this press release, the Company has posted supplemental information on its website which further discusses the financial performance of the Company for the three and nine months ended December 31, 2011. The purpose of the supplemental information is to provide further discussion and analysis of the Company's financial results for its fiscal 2012 third quarter and year-to-date. The supplemental information can be found in the Investor Relations section of Orion's Web site at http://investor.oriones.com/.

About Orion Energy Systems

Orion Energy Systems, Inc. (NYSE Amex: OESX) is a leading power technology enterprise that designs, manufactures and deploys energy management systems — consisting primarily of high-performance, energy efficient lighting platforms, intelligent wireless control systems and direct renewable solar technology for commercial and industrial customers — without compromising their quantity or quality of light. Since December 2001, Orion's technology has benefited its customers and the environment by reducing its customers:

    Energy demand by 699,848 kilowatts, or 19.3 billion kilowatt-hours;
    Energy costs by approximately $1.5 billion; and
    Indirect carbon dioxide emission by 12.5 million tons.

Contact:
Orion Energy Systems, Inc.
Investor Relations Contact:
Scott Jensen
Chief Financial Officer
(920) 892-5454
sjensen@oesx.com

Source: Orion Energy Systems, Inc.
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