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Ciena  (CIEN) - Get Ciena Corporation Report exceeded Wall Street's first-quarter expectations Tuesday, but shares of the networking systems, services and software company slipped.

The Hanover, Maryland-based company reported earnings of $33.6 million, or 21 cents a share, a swing from a loss of $473.4 million, or $3.29 a share, a year ago when the company recorded a major income tax-related expense. Adjusted earnings totaled $52.8 million, or 33 cents a share, up from $21.9 million, or 15 cents a share, a year ago. Revenue increased 21% to $778.5 million. Analysts expected Ciena to report earnings of 30 cents on sales of $760.6 million.

Ciena saw strong sales in its converged packet optical segment, with revenue increasing 71% to $548.9 million. The segment focuses on hardware sales for networking.

"We began fiscal 2019 with a very strong first-quarter performance, including outstanding top and bottom line growth as well as continued market share gains,"  Gary B. Smith, president and CEO said in a statement. "We believe that the combination of our leading innovation and positive industry dynamics will enable us to further extend our leadership position."

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The company repurchased about 600,000 common shares for an aggregate price of $21.2 million during the quarter. Cash and investments totaled $788 million and cash flow used in operations totaled $14.1 million.

Shares of Ciena Corp. were down about 4.21% to $41 Tuesday.