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VOXX International Q1 loss narrows on lower expenses

Audio equipment maker VOXX International (VOXX) Tuesday said its net loss narrowed slightly in the first quarter, helped mainly by lower operating expenses. The unimpressive results, marked by a decline in sales, triggered a stock sell-off.

The net loss was $0.9 million or $0.04 per share in the first quarter, compared to a loss of $3.03 million or $0.13 per share in the same period last year. Meanwhile, the company reported earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of $1.3 million, compared to a loss of $1.3 million a year earlier.

The improvement in bottom line performance is attributable to the initiatives taken by the New York-based VOXX to realign its operations and the resultant cost reduction. Operating expenses dropped 16% annually to $32.7 million during the quarter.

“New programs and product launches across the segments should result in top-line growth in the second half of the year. Additionally, lower inventory positions and improved gross margins, particularly in the Premium Audio segment, should favorably impact the bottom-line,” said VOXX CEO Pat Lavelle.

The factors that contributed to the decline are the recovery of professional fees from the previous years, measures adopted by the management last year to reduce fixed expenses and the initiatives to improve operating efficiencies. Such initiatives, combined with new product launches, are expected to help the company return to profitability in the coming quarters.

The unimpressive results, marked by a decline in sales, triggered a stock sell-off

During the quarter, sales decreased 12% to $100.9 million. Sales at the Automotive segment rose 7.1% year-on-year to $39.6 million, helped by the rear-seat infotainment headrest programs rolled out by the company. The growth in the Automotive unit was more than offset by a 28% plunge in sales at the Consumer Accessories segment amidst broad-based softness in demand. Contributing to the downturn, Premium Audio segment sales dropped 14.2% to $32.4 million.

Shares of VOXX traded higher during the regular session Tuesday, and closed up 6.31%. In the after-hours, however, the stock plunged more than 16% following the earnings release.

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