Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Acxiom (ACXM) reduces revenue, earnings outlook

AlphaNinja - Digital marketing whiz Acxiom (ACXM) guided revenue for Q1 to a range of about $250m, well below the consensus estimate of $280m, and sees earnings of about 5cents per share, as opposed to the 20cents the street is looking for.

Not a ton of detail in this afternoon's release, nor much to be optimistic about in terms of the company proactively "fighting" in these tough times:

John Meyer, Acxiom’s chief executive officer and president, stated, “Our first-quarter revenues are expected to decrease 17 to 21 percent compared to the first quarter a year ago, as adjusted for the data pass-through contract of $22.2 million included in revenue for the prior year first quarter. The outlook for revenue in the near term remains challenging. We continue to feel the effects of market consolidation, as well as clients continuing to defer decisions on their marketing spending or canceling programs, both of which have an effect on our revenue and our ability to estimate revenue.

Was that unintentional humor? Yes John, we'd agree with you that customers "deferring decisions on their marketing spending" and "canceling programs" could affect your revenues detrimentally!

Taking down the full year EPS estimate by 20cents still gets me to a rough estimate of $220million in Free Cash Flow for this upcoming year, a 25% FCFY (Free Cash Flow Yield as a % of market value). That's huge, and may be why Eddie Lampert, a big Free-Cash-Flow chaser, is the 3rd largest shareholder. With the stock dropping big after hours, it may be worth buying some in the morning.

Lampert's position in the stock, unchanged from the previous quarter:


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