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FMC Technologies' CEO Discusses Q4 2011 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

Margins, however, for this segment of 7.2% in the quarter were clearly below our expectations. The margin shortfall was largely related to our Subsea Eastern Region. In the quarter, we took a charge related to the Laggan-Tormore project for $19 million due to increased cost associated with an engineering interface issue. In addition, it was necessary to add resources to execute the project within the customer's need date. Additionally, we recognized cost primarily associated with anticipated project delays on West Africa projects, where we're not on schedule to meet our customer's contractual delivery dates.

Finally, as we respond to growth in our subsea business, we continue to experience higher labor cost associated with our expanding workforce. We've also increased our R&D spending as we accelerate the development of our subsea portfolio.

Surface Technologies' fourth quarter revenue of $374 million was up 38% from 2010 and 11% from the third quarter, driven largely by North American shale activity for both fluid control and surface wellhead. International activity has improved for surface wellhead as we've recovered from the challenges we faced earlier in the year, and orders that were delayed are now starting to ship. We're pleased that these issues from the first half of the year are largely behind us.

Energy Infrastructure fourth quarter revenue of $151 million increased 21% from 2010 and 17% from the third quarter as we experienced a traditionally stronger fourth quarter.

Now turning to our subsea business. In the fourth quarter, we inbounded 43 subsea trees, bringing our 2011 total to 165 trees. This represented 53% of the total market, in which 311 trees were awarded. Our frame and alliance agreements with many of our partners again contributed significantly towards our ability to achieve another strong year of awards.

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