Today's Tech Winners and Losers
Shares of Merge Technologies (MRGE) were among technology's losers Friday, tumbling 19% after the software company delayed the release of its fourth-quarter results and warned that sales for the period would be well below Wall Street's forecast.
The company, which does business as Merge Healthcare, expects to report fourth-quarter sales of $23 million to $26 million. Analysts polled by Thomson First Call project sales of $35.4 million. The company attributed the shortfall to certain large sales contracts signed during the fourth quarter that would be recorded as deferred revenue.
Merge blamed the delay in posting its full results on accounting issues surrounding fourth-quarter sales. "As a result of the complexities associated with accounting for sales transactions in the fourth quarter, our year-end audit has not been sufficiently completed and, accordingly, we are not publishing complete financial results at this time," the company said. Shares were trading down $4.55 to $19.95.
Syniverse (SVR) sank 28% after the networking-services company posted in-line fourth-quarter earnings but projected first-quarter sales well below expectations. The company reported adjusted earnings of $14.8 million, or 22 cents a share, on sales of $83.6 million. Analysts expected earnings of 22 cents a share and sales of $83.9 million. A year earlier, the company recorded a loss of $3.9 million, or 10 cents a share, on sales of $88.3 million.Looking ahead, Syniverse sees first-quarter earnings of $10 million to $12 million, before items, on sales of $71 million to $73 million. Analysts project earnings of $14.5 million, or 21 cents a share, and sales of $84.1 million. Shares were down $6.03 to $15.27. Shares of Linktone (LTON) rose modestly after the Chinese maker of wireless entertainment products announced the departure of its chief executive. The company didn't offer a specific reason for Raymond Yang's resignation, but said that Chief Financial Officer Colin Sung will serve as acting CEO until a permanent replacement is found. Yang's departure comes less than a month after the company slashed its fourth-quarter and full-year earnings guidance below Wall Street's expectation. Shares were trading up 9 cents to $7.10.
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