HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) ¿ Shares of defense contractor ManTech International Corp. fell Tuesday as an analyst said he expects profit this year and next to be below Wall Street expectations, citing uncertainty surrounding the company's leadership and other issues. Broadpoint AmTech analyst Peter Arment said in a note to investors he is not comfortable with the share price of the Fairfax, Va., company that he said supports "ambiguity surrounding succession plans and the budgetary environment." He estimated earnings of $2.95 per share this year and $3.20 per share for 2010. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters expect higher earnings of $2.99 per share in 2009 and $3.34 per share in 2010. Arment set a price target of $38 for ManTech, which implies downside of 10.9 percent from its closing price Monday of $42.63. The company announced March 3 that Robert Coleman, president and chief operating officer, will resign. He will remain on the board of directors and is to exit his job over three months. Some analysts have said that Coleman, who led the company since 2004, was key to ManTech's rise as a defense information technology company. Revenue soared under Coleman, to $1.87 billion last year from $842 million in 2004 while earnings per share improved to $2.55 from 76 cents.
Arment said ManTech, an intelligence information technology company, "is in prime position to benefit from the coming expansion of cyber security initiatives." However, because of Coleman's announced resignation, the company's exposure to potential plans by the federal government to shift away from outsourcing of government intelligence information technology and other issues, Arment rated ManTech "Neutral." Shares fell $2.84, or 6.7 percent, to $39.79 in midday trading.