July 30, 2012 / 8:28 PM / in 6 years

Seagate forecasts weak first-quarter on slowing PC sales

(Reuters) - Hard drive maker Seagate Technology Plc projected first-quarter revenue below estimates on slowing PC sales and lower-than-expected growth in the company’s enterprise segment.

Seagate said it expects first-quarter sales of about $4 billion, less than the $4.62 billion expected by analysts, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Chief Executive Steve Luczo on a conference call with analysts cited slowing economic growth and shaky sales of personal computers as consumers shift toward tablets and smartphones for the slowing sales growth.

The company’s shares fell 9 percent in extended trading. They had closed at $30.43 on Monday on the Nasdaq.

Fourth-quarter results also came in below expectations as a supplier issue affected shipments, which the company had warned Wall Street about.

The company’s profit rose to $2.37 per share, or $1.01 billion, from 28 cents, or $119 million, a year earlier.

Revenue jumped 57 percent to $4.48 billion.

Excluding one-time charges, the company earned $2.41 per share.

Analysts on average had expected a profit of $2.51 per share on $4.56 billion in revenue, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Seagate earlier this month said it would not meet its own revenue guidance for the quarter as it shipped less hard disks to high-margin enterprise customers.

Seagate’s results come in contrast to rival Western Digital Corp, which trumped expectations and guided a strong fiscal 2013 on the back of enterprise sales.

Seagate and Western Digital together command over 90 percent of the hard-drive market.

Reporting by Himank Sharma in Bangalore; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila

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