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Motorola Solutions posts solid quarter, stock falls on guidance

Motorola Solutions (MSI) reported a solid quarter with an increase in government revenue, but the company’s stock took a fall due to warnings on its guidance for the first quarter.

Fourth quarter sales for the company, which focuses on networks and rugged devices for public safety and other verticals, were up three percent year-over-year to $2.5 billion and flat for the year. Government sales were up 4% in the quarter and 1% for the year, while enterprise sales stood at $736 million for the quarter — up slightly year-over-year, while full-year enterprise sales were down 2% from the 2012.

Motorola Solutions said that it secured multimillion-dollar contracts with customers that included the cities of Charlotte and Greensboro, N.C.; the U.S. Navy; the Tennessee Department of Safety; and counties in Maryland, New Jersey, New York, South Carolina, Wisconsin and California, among others. Its international contracts for the quarter included police forces in China, Korea and Myanmar. The company also bought Twisted Pair Solutions to push forward interoperability for PTT over broadband with its own radio network.

Chairman and CEO Greg Brown said that he was “pleased with the way we finished the year.”

However, Gino Bonanotte, the company’s CFO, told investors in the company’s quarterly call that first quarter sales are expected to be down 4-6% year-over-year, while full-year sales for 2014 are projected to be flat to up 2%. That news was enough to drive the stock down, with pre-announcement trading around $67 per share followed by a plunge to less than $65 per share. The stock was slowly edging back up Thursday, trading at $65.15 per share midday.



Kelly Hill
Kelly Hill
Kelly reports on network test and measurement, as well as the use of big data and analytics. She first covered the wireless industry for RCR Wireless News in 2005, focusing on carriers and mobile virtual network operators, then took a few years’ hiatus and returned to RCR Wireless News to write about heterogeneous networks and network infrastructure. Kelly is an Ohio native with a masters degree in journalism from the University of California, Berkeley, where she focused on science writing and multimedia. She has written for the San Francisco Chronicle, The Oregonian and The Canton Repository. Follow her on Twitter: @khillrcr

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