Zebra Technologies 1st-quarter profit cut in half

LINCOLNSHIRE, Ill. (AP) — Zebra Technologies Corp., which makes printers for bar codes, plastic cards and, radio-frequency identification tags, said that its first-quarter earnings fell by about half, mainly because the company didn't benefit from income that it received in the year-ago period from discontinued operations.

Zebra on Friday reported net income of nearly $30.2 million, or 58 cents per share, for the three months ended March 31. That was down from $61.6 million, or $1.10 per share, in the same quarter a year ago, when the company had nearly 7 percent more shares outstanding than it had last quarter.

In the year-ago period, about $31.5 million of Zebra's overall net income was from operations that have since been discontinued as a result of restructuring.

The latest quarter's net income of 58 cents per share was a penny ahead of the 57-cent consensus estimate from analysts surveyed by FactSet.

Revenue rose nearly 3 percent to $243.9 million, above analysts' estimate of $242.9 million. Hardware revenue rose 0.6 percent to $181.2 million, while supplies revenue increased nearly 12 percent to about $50 million.

The company shipped 297,669 printers during the quarter, up nearly 5 percent over the same quarter a year ago. The average printer selling price fell 4 percent to $503.

Operating expenses rose about 3 percent to $77.9 million.

Zebra predicted second-quarter revenue of $250 million to $260 million, and earnings of 58 to 63 cents per share.

Those are in line with analysts' consensus expectations for $251.1 million in revenue and earnings of 64 cents per share.

Shares of Zebra rose 26 cents to $37.41 in afternoon trading. The stock has traded in a 52-week range of $28.20 to $44.53.