Operating profit at Harvard Bioscience fell 72 percent during the three months ended June 30, as a slump in revenues continued into its third consecutive quarter and currency troubles and restructuring costs further weakened its bottom line.
The manufacturer of laboratory and research equipment posted operating profits of $281,000 on $18 million in revenues during the second quarter, compared with $1.1 million operating profits on $23 million in revenues during the same period last year. The 23 percent dip in revenues was the third straight quarter of sequential and year-over-year declines and marked the lowest quarterly sales for the company in more than three years.
Company officials said the relative strength of the U.S. dollar compared to other currencies trimmed revenues by $1.6 million and lowered net income by $100,000 during the quarter. Restructuring costs also reduced profit by $500,000, as Harvard Bioscience consolidated operations of its Scie-Plas, Biochrom and Hoefer businesses.
But executives at the Holliston, Mass.-based firm, including CEO Chane Graziano, said there were recent signs of a rebound. Its Harvard Appartus division — which produces anesthesia equipment, surgical tools and other scientific instruments — has seen a strong pickup in orders since June. And order backlog also has grown significantly, including an order for an advanced microliter spectrophotometer expected to ship before the end of September.
Nevertheless, the company revised its 2009 earnings and revenue forecast to reflect its sub-par first-half results. Net income is now expected to be in the range of $4.8 million to $6 million on $77 million to $80 million in revenues for the full year.
The company said it expects third-quarter sales of between $19 million and $20 million.