Laureate Education Profit Jumps

Higher education provider Laureate Education ( LAUR) said its second-quarter earnings rose 75.9% from the year-ago period, boosted by increase in new student enrollment.

The company earned $38 million, or 72 cents a share, in the quarter, compared with $21.6 million, or 42 cents a share, a year ago. Second-quarter's income from continuing operation rose 30% from a year ago to $40.7 million, or 77 cents a share. Adjusted for items, income from continuing operation was $39.6 million, or 75 cents a share.

Analysts polled by Thomson First Call were expecting earnings of $36.6 million, or 68 cents a share.

Second-quarter revenue rose 33.5% from a year ago to $303.1 million. Analysts were expecting revenue of $292.9 million in the most recent quarter.

The company expects to earn 19 cents a share to 21 cents a share in the third quarter, excluding stock option expenses of 2 cents a share to 3 cents a share, on revenue of $240 million to $265 million. Analysts were expecting earnings of 21 cents a share on revenue of $247.9 million in the third quarter.

For the full year 2006, earnings are expected to be $2.05 a share to $2.15 a share, excluding stock option expenses of 10 cents a share to 12 cents a share. Analysts were expecting earnings of $2 a share for the full year.

For the full year 2007, the company expects to earn $2.59 a share to $2.67 a share, excluding stock option expenses of 12 cents a share to 14 cents a share, on revenue of $1.275 billion to $1.375 billion. Analysts were expecting earnings of $2.43 a share on revenue of $1.32 billion.

''As indicated by our 2007 earnings outlook, we remain confident in our five year plan that calls for 25% average annual growth in earnings between 2006 and 2010," the company said.

Second-quarter operating income rose 27.8% from a year ago to $57 million, however operating margin dropped 84 basis points to 18.8%.

The company's total student enrollment at campus-based institutions increased 34% to 199,377 students and total student enrollment at Laureate online education increased 27% to 29,134 students. New student enrollment at Laureate online education was up 23%.

This story was created through a joint venture between TheStreet.com and IRIS.

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