Ciena must be starting to dread its quarterly earnings calls: It’s reported decent earnings in the last two quarters, but its stock has still taken a plunge after the calls. The stock is down about 17 percent today, after its first-quarter 2016 earnings call this morning.
Ciena reported revenue of $573.1 million, compared to $529.2 million for the same period last year, an 8.3 percent increase year-over-year. Ciena’s non-GAAP earnings per share for the first quarter of 2016 was 18 cents, compared to 12 cents for the first quarter of 2015.
Highlights for the quarter included better than expected performance from the Cyan portfolio — including the Blue Planet software platform — garnering about $40 million, although most of that is from Cyan’s hardware. The company said in December it didn’t expect Blue Planet to drive revenue in 2016.
“Overall, the Cyan [Blue Planet] integration has been extremely smooth,” said Ciena CEO Gary Smith on the earnings call. “Customer interest is frankly beyond our expectations, especially around the virtualization and orchestration capabilities of the next-gen Blue Planet software platform.”
Blue Planet won four new customers in the first quarter, “including a new global Tier 1 based in Europe and a North American MSO,” said Smith, adding that Blue Planet is especially being fueled by “the platform’s ability to deliver on the market’s growing preference for openness.” To that end, he cited Blue Planet’s commercial version of the Open Network Operating System (ONOS), released during the first quarter.
Ciena’s new Waveserver data center interconnect business also did well. “Q1 was our first quarter shipping Waveserver, and we took revenue from our first three customers,” said Smith.
However, Wall Street was disappointed with Ciena’s guidance for the second quarter, with revenue projections in the range of $615 to $645 million.
“Performance in the quarter was overshadowed by negative commentary during the call as management indicated weakness in EMEA, an appreciating U.S. dollar, and uncertainty from broader macro-trends will act as headwinds throughout the year,” writes Catharine Trebnick in a Dougherty & Company research note.