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AeroVironment reports record sales driven by ‘strong performance of our systems in Ukraine’

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AeroVironment Inc. shares rallied in the extended session Tuesday after the defense contractor specializing in robotics reported record results and a better-than-expected forecast, and credited the performance of its products in Ukraine.


shares rallied nearly 6% after hours, following a 0.1% rise to close the regular session at $90.32.

“Given our pipeline, record backlog and global tailwinds supporting our broad portfolio of robotic solutions – bolstered by the strong performance of our systems in Ukraine – we are at the beginning of a new phase of growth that will lead to further attractive returns for our shareholders,” AeroVironment Chief Executive Wahid Nawabi said in a statement.

The company’s Switchblade “kamikaze” drone has seen service in the war in Ukraine as part of U.S. support efforts following Russia’s invasion last year.

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Read: Investors may be feeling more secure than Vladimir Putin after last weekend’s attempted coup

For the year, AeroVironment forecast adjusted earnings of $2.30 to $2.60 a share on revenue of $630 million to $660 million. Analysts, on average, had forecast $2.04 a share on revenue of $601.1 million.

The company reported a fourth-quarter loss of $160.5 million, or $6.31 a share, versus net income of $7.3 million, or 29 cents a share, in the year ago period. That big loss included an event, triggered by the company not being selected for phase 2 of the Army’s Future Tactical Unmanned Aircraft System program.

Read: U.S. to send $500 million in military aid to Ukraine — the 41st aid package since Russia’s invasion

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As a result, the carrying value of the company’s medium UAS business unit “exceeded its fair value,” and “as a result of the decrease in expected cash flows a goodwill impairment charge of $156 million was recorded,” the company said in a statement.

Excluding that and other one-time charges, the company reported adjusted earnings of 99 cents a share, compared with 12 cents a share a year ago.

Revenue rose to $186 million from $132.6 million in the year-ago period as product sales grew to $141.5 million from $74 million a year ago. Analysts surveyed by FactSet had forecast adjusted earnings of 95 cents a share on revenue of $159.5 million.

The company also reported that backlog, as defined as “remaining performance obligations under firm orders for which funding is currently appropriated to us under a customer contract,” was $424.1 million, as of April 30, up from $210.8 million in the year-ago period.

Over the past 12 months, AeroVironment shares have advanced 9%, while the S&P 500 index

has gained 12.3%.

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