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Analysts at US Bancorp Piper Jaffray open their new report on Petah Tikvah based ECI Telecom (Nasdaq:ECIL) on a positive note. "The company will meet our Q4 forecasts." The rest of its report is less rosy, at least as far as short-term events are concerned.

The bank had earlier estimated the company would post $1.02 billion revenues in 2002. Now they don't see how it will cross $900 million.

Piper Jaffray's current projection is in line with the average Wall Street projection for ECI. "A rough telecom environment, longer sales cycles, and the sale of the company's business systems division all lead to reduced 2002 revenue expectations"¿ say Piper Jaffray analysts Robert Goldman and Daniel Meron.

The two expect $894 million revenues 14.3% lower than analysts' forecasts for 2001. "In a 'regular' market environment the company could grow 10% or more annually," they say, "but we would like to let investors know the company's revenues this year are not expected to rise substantially, if they rise at all." Bottom line estimates are a loss of no less than $1.06 per share in 2001, which should drop to 8 cents per share in 2002.

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"The most interesting news in ECI's Q4 results won't be the figures or the next-quarter guidance," say the analysts "but the company's overall direction and strategy."

TheMarker previously reported estimates the company will detail its new plan for 2002, currently being drafted by new chairman David Ball and vice chairman Shlomo Dovrat, upon publication of its Q4 results.

The company will most likely announce the end of the spin off process, and list the areas on which it intends to focus.