Press Release

Itron Announces First Quarter 2012 Financial Results

LIBERTY LAKE, Wash.—April 25, 2012—Itron, Inc. (NASDAQ:ITRI) announced today financial results for its first quarter ended March 31, 2012. Highlights include:

  • Quarterly revenues of $572 million;
  • Quarterly GAAP diluted net earnings per share of 63 cents;
  • Quarterly non-GAAP diluted net earnings per share of 91 cents;
  • Quarterly cash flow from operations and free cash flow of $54 million and $42 million;
  • Quarterly adjusted EBITDA of $67 million;
  • Twelve-month backlog of $760 million and total backlog of $1.2 billion; and
  • Quarterly bookings of $488 million.

"We're off to a good start to the year on revenue with our newly implemented global Energy and Water segments both contributing to four percent sales growth at constant currency," said LeRoy Nosbaum, Itron's president and chief executive officer. "Our expenses are higher compared to last year as we are building the Energy and Water sales teams in Latin America and Asia-Pacific, undertaking new product development projects globally, and implementing a global ERP system and organization structure to support our new global operations. This impacted our operating margin compared to the prior year but the initiatives are intended to make us more efficient and better positioned to capitalize on opportunities around the world."

Financial Results
Revenues for the quarter were $572 million compared to $564 million in the same period in 2011. Changes in foreign currency exchange rates unfavorably impacted revenue by $13 million for the quarter. The increase in revenue for the quarter was due to growth in both the Energy and Water segments. Energy revenue increased over the prior year primarily due to increased smart gas module shipments in North America and increased electric product shipments in Europe and Asia-Pacific. In addition, OpenWay project revenue in North America increased $3 million over the same period in 2011. Revenue growth in the Water segment was driven by increased meter shipments in Latin America and Europe.

Gross margin for the quarter was 32.0 percent compared to the prior year period margin of 32.8 percent. In the prior year period, an $8.6 million gain from a recovery of a warranty claim was recorded which positively impacted the gross margin by 1.5 percentage points. Excluding the impact of this gain, gross margin improved 0.7 percentage points over the prior year primarily due to a $4 million decrease in warranty expenses.

GAAP operating expenses were $144 million in the quarter compared to $135 million in the same period last year. Changes in foreign currency exchange rates favorably impacted operating expenses by $3 million for the quarter. The increase in expenses was due to sales and marketing efforts in both the Energy and Water segments, increased product research and development in the Energy segment and increased Corporate general and administrative costs, including acquisition-related expenses related to the SmartSynch acquisition which is anticipated to close in early May.

Net interest expense was $2.2 million for the quarter compared to $11.8 million in the same period last year. The decrease in net interest expense was due to a reduced principal balance and lower effective interest rates. The company refinanced its bank debt in August 2011 which significantly reduced the interest rate. During the quarter, we reduced our debt by approximately $14 million.

GAAP net income and diluted EPS for the quarter was $25 million, or 63 cents per share, compared to net income of $27 million, or 66 cents per share in the same period in 2011. The decrease in 2012 net income for the quarter was due to an increase in operating expenses offset by a decrease in net interest expense.

Non-GAAP operating expenses for the quarter, which excludes amortization of intangibles, restructuring charges and acquisition related expenses, increased $9 million over prior year. An increase of $12 million related to global sales and marketing activity, product research and development, and general administrative costs, was partially offset by a decrease of $3 million due to currency fluctuations. Non-GAAP net income and diluted EPS for the quarter was $36 million, or 91 cents per share, compared to $41 million, or 99 cents per share, in the same period in 2011. The decrease in non-GAAP net income for the quarter was due to an increase in operating expenses partially offset by a decrease in interest expense.

During the quarter, the company repurchased 282,090 shares of Itron common stock at an average price of $37.56 per share pursuant to Board authorization to repurchase up to $100 million of Itron common stock during a 12-month period beginning October 2011. The company has repurchased approximately 1.1 million shares of Itron common stock at an average price of $36.20 per share since inception of the program, representing 2.7 percent of total shares outstanding as of October 2011.

Earnings Conference Call
Itron will host a conference call to discuss the financial results and guidance contained in this release at 5:00 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) on April 25, 2012. The call will be webcast in a listen-only mode. Webcast information and conference call materials will be made available 15 minutes before the start of the call and are accessible on Itron's website at under the Investors page. The webcast replay will begin after the conclusion of the live call and will be available for two weeks. A telephone replay of the call will also be available approximately one hour after the conclusion of the live call, for 48 hours, and is accessible by dialing (888) 203-1112 (Domestic) or (719) 457-0820 (International), entering passcode 1314113.

Forward Looking Statements
This release contains forward-looking statements concerning our expectations about operations, financial performance, sales, earnings and cash flows. These statements reflect our current plans and expectations and are based on information currently available. The statements rely on a number of assumptions and estimates, which could be inaccurate, and which are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause our actual results to vary materially from those anticipated. Risks and uncertainties include the rate and timing of customer demand for our products, rescheduling of current customer orders, changes in estimated liabilities for product warranties, changes in laws and regulations, our dependence on new product development and intellectual property, future acquisitions, changes in estimates for stock-based and bonus compensation, increasing volatility in foreign exchange rates, international business risks and other factors that are more fully described in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2011 and other reports on file with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Itron undertakes no obligation to update publicly or revise any forward-looking statements, including our business outlook.

Non-GAAP Financial Information
To supplement our consolidated financial statements presented in accordance with GAAP, we use certain non-GAAP financial measures, including non-GAAP operating expense, non-GAAP operating income, non-GAAP net income, non-GAAP diluted EPS, adjusted EBITDA, and free cash flow. We provide these non-GAAP financial measures because we believe they provide greater transparency and represent supplemental information used by management in its financial and operational decision making. Specifically, these non-GAAP financial measures are provided to enhance investors' overall understanding of our current financial performance and our future anticipated performance by excluding infrequent or non-cash costs, particularly those associated with acquisitions. We exclude certain costs in our non-GAAP financial measures as we believe the net result is a measure of our core business. Non-GAAP performance measures should be considered in addition to, and not as a substitute for, results prepared in accordance with GAAP. Our non-GAAP financial measures may be different from those reported by other companies. A more detailed discussion of why we use non-GAAP financial measures, the limitations of using such measures, and reconciliations between non-GAAP and the nearest GAAP financial measures are included in this press release.

Statements of operations, segment information, balance sheets, cash flow statements and reconciliations of non-GAAP financial measures to the most directly comparable GAAP financial measures follow.

Related Documents
Itron Q1 2012 Earnings Statement.

About Itron

Itron enables utilities and cities to safely, securely and reliably deliver critical infrastructure solutions to communities in more than 100 countries. Our portfolio of smart networks, software, services, meters and sensors helps our customers better manage electricity, gas and water resources for the people they serve. By working with our customers to ensure their success, we help improve the quality of life, ensure the safety and promote the well-being of millions of people around the globe. Itron is dedicated to creating a more resourceful world. Join us:

Itron® is a registered trademark of Itron, Inc. All third-party trademarks are property of their respective owners and any usage herein does not suggest or imply any relationship between Itron and the third party unless expressly stated.

PR Contact

Alison Mallahan

Senior Manager, Corporate Communications

(509) 891-3802