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Managing Editor

Lucent back in black

Oct 28, 20032 mins
Financial Services IndustryWi-Fi

* Achieves profitability ahead of schedule, but no guarantee of sustainability

After years of wrenching restructuring and cost cutting, Lucent last week posted its first net profit in over three years and a quarter ahead of schedule.

Lucent recorded net income of $99 million for its fiscal fourth quarter ended Sept. 30, or 2 cents per share, compared with a net loss of $2.81 billion, or 84 cents a share, for the same period a year earlier. Lucent didn’t expect to reach profitability until fiscal 2004.

Revenue for the quarter was $2.03 billion, compared to $2.28 billion one year earlier.

Excluding various one-time charges and benefits, Lucent broke even, but that still beat analysts’ expectations of a 4 cent per-share loss.

The company remains somewhat cautious on its outlook, however, and declined to forecast when it will return to sustained profitability. Lucent Chairman and CEO Pat Russo added, however, that the company is seeing some signs of stability in the market.

For the 2003 fiscal year ending Sept. 30, Lucent reported revenue of $8.5 billion, compared with $12.3 billion in fiscal 2002. The year ended with a net loss of $770 million, or 29 cents per share, compared with a net loss of $11.8 billion, or $3.49 per share, for fiscal 2002.

Lucent reported that initiatives to expand into areas including services and government contracts, especially in regions outside the U.S., are contributing to improved results.

Managing Editor

Jim Duffy has been covering technology for over 28 years, 23 at Network World. He covers enterprise networking infrastructure, including routers and switches. He also writes The Cisco Connection blog and can be reached on Twitter @Jim_Duffy and at

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